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What belongs in your storm emergency kit

A portable battery-powered radio is a necessity during any storm. (WTOP/Colleen Kelleher)

WASHINGTON – When flurries threaten the Washington area, everyone runs to the store. But do you really know what to buy for your emergency kits?

Fairfax County’s Office of Emergency Management recommends having enough food and water at home to last three days without electricity – that’s three gallons of water per person.

It’s also important to have a battery- or crank-powered radio, flashlights with extra batteries, a first-aid kit including all necessary prescription medicines and a hand-written list of important phone numbers in case cell phone batteries die.

If there is a problem with your radio, you can always hear the latest updates on the storm on WTOP through the Glass-Enclosed Nerve App on your iOS or Android device, or by calling 202-380-9977.

People with pets also need to make sure there is enough food and water for the animals too. Fairfax County says that should include five days of food, water and medications. Don’t forget a manual can opener for canned food.

For more tips on making an emergency kit for your pet, follow this link.

In the car, emergency officials say, you should also have snacks, water and a first-aid kit along with more traditional snow tools such as an ice scraper, a large bag of sand or cat litter to help with traction, and warm blankets and road flares in case the car gets stuck for an extended period of time.

Loudoun County wants everyone to remember to “Get where you need to go before the weather gets bad.” And Loudoun advises that now is the time to double-check the family emergency plan for where to meet and who to call if there is a problem getting home.

For a full list of what Fairfax County suggests having in an emergency kit, follow this link

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