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When a cyclone strikes you need to be ready with First Aid kits, portable radios, portable power, generators and lots of other what we term 'essential' items. Scroll down the page to see all of our kit recommendations.

  1. AM/FM portable radio - if the mobile networks go down this is the only way you will have to keep in touch with what is going on in the outside world - keep spare batteries on hand. 

  2. Heavy Duty Torch - nothing worse than not being able to see anything at night

  3. First Aid Kit - doesn't have to be fancy, just the bare-bones that contains bandages, band-aids, scissors and some alcohol wipes. Perhaps add some paracetamol or ibuprofen for some pain relief. 

  4. Portable Powerbanks - keep a couple of these to help charge portable electronics like mobile phones, some of the latest laptops let you also charge them via USB-C so look for a USB-C powerbank to give you greater flexibility in what you can charge. 

  5.    All your important documents like passports, birth certificates, insurance documents, emergency contacts - (yep write them down don't rely on your phone to remember them) and medical prescriptions in a watertight sealed/ziplock bag. While you're at it, throw a spare set of house and car keys into that bag. Make sure that bag goes with you everywhere e.g. to evacuation shelters etc

  6.   NON-PERISHABLE food to last you up to 7 days - that means no fresh bread and milk,you need tinned stuff, things that won't expire in a hot/wet environment without power. Check out all the zombie apocalypse movies/tv shows for ideas. You can still have milk, but buy that UHT stuff in your coffee aisle not the fridge stuff. 

  7.   WATER - enough bottled water to last 7-10 days - following a Tropical Cyclone, water may not be safe to drink for several days. Get onto this at the start of the season - water has a long expiration date so don't leave it until the last few days when the thousands of mad buggers hit the shops, buy it, don't open them and leave them in storage (away from sunlight). Worse case scenario you have plenty of water for fishing and camping trips later on. 

  8.  Portable Gas Stove - these are relatively inexpensive additions to your kit that make a world of difference to your ability to enjoy some decent food while the power is out. Make sure you buy the little butane gas cylinders for them as well (about $3-$4 each from your local hardware store you'll need 2-3). You can then use these for camping trips etc throughout the year.  

  9.  TOILET PAPER - Don't laugh we've been caught out before, using leaves instead of soft paper is not as nice and quite abrasive. 

  10.  Heavy Duty Rain coat - granted you're not going out in it like we do, but you will likely get wet anyway, the rain manages to find a way inside the house. The heavy duty rain coat also insulates you against the biting cold of the wind and provides limited protection against some light debris should your roof relocate or your window smashes. 

  11.  At least 3 sets of dry clothes - at least 7 sets of jocks/underwear and at least 7 pairs of socks per family member. Following a cyclone, bacteria and fungi become rampant (another reason why we don't want to buy a whole lot of fresh bread and milk before a cyclone) and usually with power and water cut we know what part of our bodies those creepy crawlies like to congregate in - so keep those parts as clean as you can and dry. 

  12.  Deodorant, toothbrush, toothpaste and any other toiletries you normally take with you on trips away. We also tend to see a spike in birthdays about 9 months after a cyclone (a trend that occurs with cyclones all around the world) so if you think that might be an issue, you might need to pack a different kind of raincoat for it ;)

  13.  GARBAGE BAGS - You will be surprised the amount of waste you and your family produce in just a few days of no power and water so make sure you have plenty of these. Most of us use those 15 cent grocery bags and they do a good job with no added expense to the kit. 

  14.  BABY STUFF - I'm not a parent, but I imagine if you are you will need baby food, powdered baby milk formula, 7 days worth of nappies and some toys to keep them busy and happy plus of course all the other things that all the other family members need e.g. clothes/baby toiletries etc

  15. A Multi-tool and zip ties - ridiculous how handy these things are, from cutting to screwing to binding stuff it's the best 20- 30 bucks you'll spend. If you don't want a mulit tool, then grab at the very least a great knife - one that really cuts not one that's decades old. 

  16. PETS - this really should be a whole other section. Pets require the same supply of food and water that you do (recommend a dry food only diet for this short time for convenience - if your dog/cat must have wet food - give them those $1 single serve packets), if you have to leave your pet behind to go to an evacuation centre you need to ensure your pet will have access to clean water for the days you will be away. You should be able to find a trickle feeder from most pet stores that will give your dog/cat a portion of food at set time intervals, don't just leave your dog/cat 7 days worth of food in its bowl - they don't portion control well as one of our OCC team found out. You will also need to make sure your pet has a collar, lead and ID tag, put your pet's medical history booklet in your documents bag (item number 1) and make sure you get your pet a blanket so they can keep warm - that's their rain coat. Pets also get bored during cyclones so make sure you pack a chew toy to keep them happy and busy. One last thing, pets do go missing after cyclones, so please make sure you take a photo of your loved one just before the cyclone so that you can share it after the event in case they do go missing. 

  17. FILL YOUR CAR/MOTORBIKE/TRUCK/BUS - Make sure your fuel tank is full I mean totally full not three quarters full, we have been in an area where fuel wasn't available for 8 days after a cyclone. Regardless what the authorities will say to you, realistically you will likely need to drive around as soon as you can after a cyclone to check on and help loved ones clean up, you have the added advantage of being able to charge important electrical items using the cigarette lighter while you do drive around. 

  18. Extra Fuel - You can never have too much fuel during these times, so fill up a couple of jerry cans and store them in a dry location.