An earthquake kit is a collection of survival gear that's especially useful for anyone who lives in areas that experience seismic activity. "Your earthquake kit should be stored on the main floor of your home in an accessible spot," advises Kristin Stevens, Director of Climate and Disaster Resilience at Americares, a health-focused relief and development organization. "It should be kept within reach of adults and be immediately visible in a closet or on a shelf. If it is difficult to access on a normal day, it could be impossible to access in an emergency!”
She lists the following as the top items to consider in an earthquake kit: flashlights (with extra bulbs and batteries), first-aid kit, wrench or pliers to turn off the gas and water supply, battery-powered or hand-crank portable radio (with extra batteries), and an emergency whistle. A quality, ready-made earthquake kit includes most of these supplies, but you still may need to supplement the kit with some basic tools, as well as personal care items that are specific to your household situation.
Besides consulting with Kristin, we researched earthquake kits that include most of the supplies you need in the aftermath of a quake. We evaluated based on the type and amount of supplies, along with the carrying container's durability and portability. We also sent the most popular options to our testers to see if they lived up to the manufacturers' claims, including quality, utility, versatility, and overall value.
Our top pick, the Redfora Complete Earthquake Bag, has a color-coded organization system and includes more than 40 accessories, including a flashlight, multi-tool, and a two-person tent.
Here are the top earthquake kits available now, based on our research and testing.
Redfora Complete Earthquake Bag
Includes food, shelter, first aid items
Organized in color-coded pouches
Easy to transport, backpack-style kit
Lacks tools such as an ax or shovel
The Redfora Complete Earthquake Bag is the best option we tested when considering earthquake kits that would meet the immediate needs of most people in the aftermath specifically of an earthquake. In particular, it includes items that meet the CDC’s recommendations such as goggles, gloves, a whistle, and rope. The only additions that would make this backpack-style earthquake kit complete would be a foldable shovel and an ax, but those are hard to find in most ready-made options.
The bag's compact size doesn't detract from comprehensiveness. "When I first looked at the list of gear in the Redfora Complete Earthquake Bag, I expected some sort of suitcase or at least an oversized backpack," she recalls. "But when I pulled this bag out of the box, I discovered that it’s the same size as any normal backpack." This well-equipped option is designed to sustain two people for up to 72 hours, but you can order a larger pack for up to six people. It is easily transported and well organized, so you can take advantage of its resources. This backpack-style earthquake kit separates survival essentials into resealable, waterproof pouches, which are color-coded and specific to each category: tools and first aid, shelter and warmth, food and water, and personal hygiene. We also were impressed that it is well organized, a necessity when dealing with a power failure in the wake of a disaster.
While the Redfora Complete Earthquake Bag is a premium option with a price tag to match, our tester and her fiancé, an emergency medicine doctor, found it to be well thought out and a great baseline for individuals or families up to six (depending on the options you choose at purchase). The quality and convenience justify the price point and make this earthquake kit a rock-solid Best Overall pick.
Price at time of publish: $165
Dimensions: Varies | Weight: 11-41 pounds | People Supported: 1-6 | Days of Supplies: 3 | Type: Short-term | What’s Included: Hand Crank Flashlight/Radio/Phone Charger, 107-piece Extended Life First Aid Kit, Multi-Tool, Sleeping Bag, Tube Tent, 50-foot Nylon Rope, 5-in-1 whistle, Food Bars, Water Pouches, Water Purification Tablets
Ready America 2-Person Emergency Kit
Room to add personal items
No tent included
Lacks work gloves
Being prepared for a disaster doesn’t have to cost a small fortune. Ensure that you have a basic earthquake kit on hand by picking up the Ready America Emergency Kit. It may not be the most comprehensive earthquake kit on the market, but it’s compact, portable, and affordable. Many other kits are very heavy, but this jam-packed emergency bag is easy to tote around without breaking your back. "Even though this is in part because the kit’s included supplies are more limited, it still means that it’s especially easy to grab in the event of a disaster," our tester reports. Although you may want to throw in some extra gear first.
This two-person earthquake kit takes care of the most immediate needs in the wake of a quake. Inside the lightweight backpack you find high-caloric food bars and water pouches, plus simple shelter necessities in the form of two survival blankets and ponchos. There’s no tube tent included, but according to our tester, there’s enough room inside the pack to customize the kit to suit your needs. In line with most guidelines for earthquake preparedness, this option does include a first-aid kit, dust masks, and a whistle. The nitrile gloves are a good addition for tending to medical needs but don’t satisfy the suggestion of including work gloves in an emergency kit. Even still, our tester points out that you can jump-start your disaster preparedness plan by picking up this affordable earthquake kit and outfitting it with a few additions to make it complete.
Price at time of publish: $55
Dimensions: 20 x 12 x 12 inches | Weight: 8 pounds | People Supported: 2 | Days of Supplies: 3 | Type: Short-term | What’s Included: Food bars (2), water pouches (12), survival blankets (2), 33-piece first-aid kit, emergency light sticks (2), disposable dust masks (2), nitrile gloves (4), plastic whistle (1), emergency ponchos (2), pocket tissue pack (1), backpack
Uncharted Supply Company The Seventy2 Survival System
Waterproof, with comfortable straps
Basic survival instructions included
Well-organized insert holds all supplies
Not much room to add more items
If you’re looking to splurge on a survival kit in exchange for peace of mind, the Seventy2 Survival System from Uncharted Supply Co is a top option. We recommend this well-organized pack as the best premium earthquake kit for its assortment of equipment, instructive insert, and thoughtful design. Keep this waterproof, 600D pack with a comfort harness handy in your closet or car and you’ll be better prepared for a wide range of survival situations, including an earthquake.
The center of the Seventy2 Survival System is a canvas insert with pouches that address essential needs such as water, warmth, food, and air quality. Inside each pouch you find the tools or equipment you need to meet the basic needs of yourself and a plus-one for 72 hours after a disaster. We especially like that this is one of the few earthquake kits to include a convertible shovel and pickaxe—tools frequently mentioned in quake survival guidelines.
If you’re at a loss as to what to do with the supplies included, it’s nice to know that there are step-by-step directions printed onto the material of the insert itself, outlining how to start a fire, administer basic first aid, or other best practices for self-preservation in a survival situation.
Price at time of publish: $399
Dimensions: 18 x 12 x 6 inches | Weight: 13.5 pounds | People Supported: 2 | Days of Supplies: 3 | Type: Short-term | What’s Included: Backpack, survival tent, first aid kit, water filter system, hand crank radio/flashlight/charger, water bottle, emergency blanket, shovel/pickaxe, multi-tool, knife, flashlight, fire starter, food rations, gloves, stormproof matches, paracord, duct tape, googles, air mask, sunscreen, hat
Best First Aid
Protect Life Emergency First-Aid Kit
Very compact and easy to store
Features specialty bandages, scissors, tweezers
Includes poncho, survival blanket, and whistle
Lacks food or water supplies
Missing many survival tools
An essential part of any disaster preparedness plan is a first aid kit. While not a comprehensive earthquake kit, the Protect Life Emergency First Aid Kit is worth having on hand for attending to medical needs. However, although this product contains useful items, such as an emergency poncho, light sticks, and a compass, our tester reports that you shouldn't rely on this product as a first-line earthquake kit, as it lacks virtually all of the CDC-recommended earthquake items.
On the other hand, it includes some basic additional survival supplies that can prove very useful. The zippered case is compact enough to fit into just about any closet, desk drawer, or the glove box or trunk of your vehicle. Our tester loved how lightweight it is and compared the size to your average toiletry bag.
This earthquake kit for first aid has more than 50 bandages, including butterfly closure strips, adhesive bandages, and specialty bandages like a first-aid abdominal pad, elbow or knee bandage, and triangular bandage. Disposable gloves, wound prep pads and dressing, plus antiseptic cleaning wipes are some of the other must-have items noted by our product tester. In addition to addressing basic medical situations, the Protect Life Emergency First Aid Kit includes a poncho, heat-reflecting blanket, and a rescue whistle. Some other items that the CDC recommends, such as rope, work gloves, and a radio, are missing from the kit. However, this affordable option still makes a good first aid kit to have on-hand or works as an add-on to a more robust survival kit.
Price at time of publish: $34
Dimensions: 7.5 x 2 x 5.1 inches | Weight: 1.1 pounds | People Supported: Varies | Days of Supplies: N/A | Type: Medical | What’s Included: Antiseptic cleaning wipes, alcohol prep pad, butterfly closure strips, adhesive bandages, gauze swab, instant cold compress, roll first-aid pad, cotton tip applicator, first-aid abdominal pad, rescue howler whistle, compass, moleskin blister relief, triangular bandage, emergency blanket, glow stick, disposable raincoat, scissors, metal tweezers, roll PBT conforming bandage, first-aid CPR face mask, eye pad, first-aid elbow/knee bandage, safety pins, povidone-iodine prep pads, first-aid non-adherent pad, first-aid adhesive wound dressing, first-aid guide, first-aid bag, first-aid brochure, first-aid disposable gloves
Sustain Supply Co. Comfort2 Emergency Survival Bag
Includes a mini stove, bowls, and utensils
Features freeze-dried food and water rations
First aid kit lacks scissors, tweezers
No tent included
While the first 72 hours after a disaster are often referred to as the most crucial, the reality is, you may need to sustain yourself beyond that 3-day window. An earthquake kit with cookware—like the Sustain Supply Co Comfort2 Emergency Bag—is one way to bolster your survival strategy. We tested this disaster kit and found it to include many (but not all) of the recommended equipment and tools, along with several pieces of gear that boosted the pack’s value.
"On the surface, $200 feels like a lot of money for an emergency kit given that you’ll (hopefully) never actually need to use it," our tester asserts. "However, I tallied up the contents, and the gear (plus pack) would be about $300 if compiled separately.
The star of this earthquake kit with cookware is its portable stove. Small but efficient, the camping stove operates using whatever combustibles you have on hand. "You can actually get quite a bit of use out of the stove and cookware if you like to camp," our tester reports. The kit starts you off with two InstaTinder packets for fire, even in wet conditions. A pair of pots, along with bowls and utensils (two sets), give you the ability to prepare basic sustenance. In addition, this earthquake survival kit features freeze-dried food options from Wise Company, although it should be noted that the options are limited to oatmeals and soups. Still, it’s likely to be more appetizing than the high-caloric food bars found in most earthquake survival kits.
Price at time of publish: $215
Dimensions: 20 x 16.8 x 11 inches | Weight: 16 pounds | People Supported: 2 | Days of Supplies: 3 | Type: Short-term | What’s Included: Backpack, Wise Company food servings (12), liters of water (2); Sustain Survival straws (2), cyalume snap lights (4), Morakniv companion knife, LED lantern, flashlight, first-aid kit, emergency blankets, bath wipes pack, portable stove, bowls and utensils (2 sets), ferrocerium rod, InstaFire tinder (2), whistles (2)
Stealth Angel Survival Earthquake Preparedness Kit
Includes food, water, hygiene supplies, and tools
Supports 2 people for up to 6 days
No ax or shovel
The Stealth Angel Survival Earthquake Preparedness Kit is a good example of what a well-equipped, all-in-one earthquake kit should contain. This option covers the bases of food, shelter, hygiene, and safety, with few details overlooked. Packed into an easily portable backpack, you find what you need to sustain two people for up to 144 hours. While many earthquake kits only include enough supplies for the first 72 hours after an emergency, this kit offers you the peace of mind of having supplies on hand for nearly a week.
Some of the earthquake-specific survival necessities included in this all-in-one kit include a whistle, safety goggles, and work gloves. A tent, ponchos, and emergency blankets ensure a measure of shelter, regardless of the conditions you find yourself in. Cordage in the form of both rope and paracord are also included. There is no foldable ax or shovel included, which are frequent tools mentioned for earthquake kits. However, smaller, useful tools like a pocket-sized multitool, tactical pen, and ferro rod can help with a variety of tasks.
As expected of an all-in-one earthquake kit, this option from Stealth Angel also includes food and water to sustain two people. The 4-ounce water pouches plus water purification tablets are enough to offer basic hydration, while the food bars help to maintain caloric intake even during the aftermath of a disaster. You can tweak the contents of this earthquake kit after purchase to meet your specific needs, but it’s also ready-to-go upon delivery. It’s a disaster bag that you can put in your garage, closet, or car to have on hand if you need it, without the scramble of gathering supplies at the last moment.
Price at time of publish: $320
Dimensions: Not listed | Weight: Not listed | People Supported: 2 | Days of Supplies: 6 | Type: Short-term | What’s Included: Water Pouches, 4-ounce (24), 400 Calorie Food Bars (24), Water Purification Tablets (20), Tactical Flashlight, Keychain LED Flashlight, Dynamo 4-in-1 Radio Flashlight Charger, 12 Hour Emergency Bright Stick, Survival Whistle, 2 Emergency Body Warmers, 2 Emergency Blankets, 2 Ponchos, Emergency Tube Tent with Rope, Stealth Angel Tactical Pen, 11-in-1 Pocket Card Multitool, Compass, Ferrocerium Rod 5-in-1, Safety Goggles, Work Gloves, Paracord Bracelet, Hygiene Kit, 36-piece First Aid Kit
First My Family All-in-One 4 Person, 72 Hour Emergency Survival Kit
Includes multiples of PPE and shelter supplies
Lightweight pack for up to 4 people
Lacks tools like a shovel, ax
Ensure that you have enough supplies on hand for everyone in your household by opting for a family earthquake kit. The First My Family All-in-One Emergency Survival Kit is equipped with enough supplies to sustain four people for the critical 72-hour period following a disaster, like an earthquake. This option stands out for meeting the basic needs of food, water, and shelter for multiple people in a pack that is lightweight enough to be easily portable.
The First My Family All-in-One Emergency Kit includes some of the most commonly recommended earthquake preparedness items, including a whistle, gloves, and a 3-day supply of food and water. Essential pieces of personal protective equipment (PPE) and shelter essentials—such as face masks, ponchos, and Mylar blankets—come in multiples to ensure that everyone has what they need to feel a measure of security and protection from the elements.
This earthquake kit is packed into a compact backpack that weighs less than 20 pounds. It’s light on the recommended tools and equipment you may need to stabilize your surroundings, such as a shovel or rope, but it’s a good start for giving your family the basic necessities that may be needed after an earthquake.
Price at time of publish: $200
Dimensions: 12 x 8 x 19 inches | Weight: 17 lbs | People Supported: 4 | Days of Supplies: 3 | Type: Short-term | What’s Included: Water pouches (24), 2400 calorie food bars (4), ponchos (4), work gloves, Life Gear LED flashlight, multi-function camping tool, backpack, body warmers (4), Mylar space blankets (4), face masks (8), first aid kit, 12-hour glow sticks (4), 5-in-1 emergency whistle with flint
Guardian Survival Gear Quake Kits 72-Hour Emergency Kit
Includes water purification tablets
Variety of tools and equipment
Lacks a radio
While there are a wide variety of supplies and equipment that could be useful in the aftermath of a disaster, It’s important to have at least the basics at the ready in the event of an earthquake. The Quake Kits 72-Hour Emergency Kit is our recommendation for an earthquake kit containing the essentials. This option addresses the basic needs of food, water, and shelter while keeping everything organized into easily accessible pouches.
Designed to support one person, the Quake Kit contains familiar staples of disaster kits, like long-lasting food bars, a 5-in-1 emergency whistle with flint starter, and a tube tent. It also stands out for including some items frequently addressed in earthquake preparedness lists, like 50 feet of nylon rope, and eye protection. Instead of only supplying water pouches, this option also includes water purification tablets, so you can ensure accessible water is safe to drink. A few additions make this kit more complete, like a hand-crank radio and batteries for the flashlight. But this kit is a popular kit to ensure that you have the essentials on hand in the event of an earthquake or other disaster.
Price at time of publish: $120
Dimensions: 12 x 9 x 20 inches | Weight: 11 pounds | People Supported: 1 | Days of Supplies: 3 | Type: Short-term | What’s Included: 400 Calorie Food Bar (9), Hydration Kit with Water Purification Tablets (10), 4oz. Water Pouches (12), Deluxe First Aid Kit, Notepad & Pencil, 5-in-1 Emergency Whistle, Nylon Rope (50 ft.), Multi-Function Pocket Knife, Pair of Safety Goggles, Small Sewing Kit, Work Gloves, Mylar Sleeping Bag, Emergency Poncho, Hand/Body Warmer, 2 Person Tube Tent, Deluxe Hygiene Kit, Pack of Pocket Tissues, Surgical Face Masks (3), Biohazard Waste Bag
JUDY The Mover Max
Supplies stored by category
Few tools included
No tent or shelter
The Judy Kit Mover Max Earthquake Kit is designed to go with you, keeping your gear and survival supplies stowed away in a waterproof bag outfitted with backpack straps. This portable earthquake kit weighs just 15 pounds, is weather-resistant, and includes many of the most important items for short-term survival, making it our recommendation for a portable earthquake kit.
A four-person supply of 21 survival essentials is neatly stowed inside of three different boxes for organization and accessibility: tools & first-aid, safety & warmth, and food & water. Especially in the event of a disaster, the pre-labeled and organized supplies make it easy to find what you need most. The sturdy bucket-style backpack features a roll-down top and waterproof material to ensure that everything inside remains dry and ready for use. The biggest shortcoming of this portable earthquake kit is in the tools category. An included multi-tool is handy for small jobs, but this kit lacks larger tools, such as a foldable shovel. It also doesn’t offer cordage, a fire starter, or tube tent, so it’s worth considering these items as an add-on for your emergency kit.
Price at time of publish: $125
Dimensions: 19.25 x 13.75 x 12 inches | Weight: 15 pounds | People Supported: 4 | Days of Supplies: 3 | Type: Short-term | What’s Included: Hand crank radio/charger/flashlight, duct tape mini roll, multi-tool, 101-piece first aid kit, quick dry towel, biohazard bag, hand sanitizer (2), wet wipes, pocket tissues, food bars (7), water pouches (14), emergency whistle (2), glow sticks (4), hand warmers (4), rescue blanket (4), poncho (4), pair of gloves, dust masks (4)
Our top pick is the Redfora Complete Earthquake Bag, a versatile option that can be customized to suit your family's needs. It covers the basics of shelter, first aid, and tools, and is a great start to being prepared for an earthquake or any other disaster. If you're looking for a more affordable and compact option, we recommend the Ready America Emergency Kit. You may need to make a few additions to suit your needs, but it's a good baseline option and can be stored in a closet or your car.
How We Tested the Kits
Our testers spent over 12 hours assessing these kits with CDC recommendations in mind. From granola bars to flashlights, they went through and tested each item before rating each kit on its quality, utility, versatility, size, and overall value. We combined these insights with our writers' and editors' independent research to bring you this list.
What to Look For in an Earthquake Kit
Type of Supplies
While most survival kits provide you with some basics to establish a measure of personal safety and comfort, the type and quantity of supplies can vary considerably. When shopping for an earthquake kit, keep in mind the most likely conditions you’d be dealing with in the event of this type of disaster.
Debris is common in the aftermath of a quake, and utilities, such as water and natural gas, may be interrupted. Choose an earthquake kit that takes into account those conditions while matching your family size and addressing other specific needs you may have.
When speaking about disaster preparedness, Kristin Stevens, Director of Climate and Disaster Resilience at Americares, points out some additional items that every home should have:
- Food and water for 7 to 10 days. The food should be shelf stable and be sure to include a manual can opener with your emergency supplies. Allow one gallon of water per person per day
- Medications for all family members
- Pet food and supplies
- A paper contact list of names and contact information for family members, doctors, utility companies
Amount of Supplies
Two factors to consider when evaluating the number of supplies you need in an earthquake kit include the number of people in your household and the period you expect to be self-reliant. Earthquake kits for multiple people include duplicates of personal items such as ponchos, heat blankets, dust masks, etc.
Keep in mind that as your supplies increase, so does the storage space required for your earthquake kit. While it’s important to be prepared, be practical about where and how you store your survival supplies. A supersized kit that expires or is unreachable in the event of a disaster does you little good.
A disaster can produce debris and moisture that might affect your survival kit if the case or bag it’s contained in is not durable enough. Look for a moisture-resistant shell, backpack, or case for your earthquake kit, and choose materials that are tear-resistant, preferably a high denier nylon. Thinner fabric may result in a damaged kit.
What do you need in an earthquake kit?
The specific contents of your earthquake kit may vary according to your circumstances, budget, and storage space. However, there are some basic items that you should definitely consider.
The CDC recommends including tools such as a shovel, ax, broom, rope, and fire extinguisher. Other frequently seen items in earthquake survival kits include personal protection equipment such as work gloves, goggles, and a dust mask. A first aid kit is a must-have, preferably with scissors for cutting bandages or clothing to quickly tend to a wound.
Food with a long shelf life and minimal preparation requirements along with a supply of drinkable water or a water filtration system, are also essential for survival situations.
Where should I keep my earthquake kit?
Choose an accessible location for your earthquake survival gear. While it might be tempting to place it out of the way in an attic or basement, keep in mind that it may not be practical or safe to retrieve it in the event of a quake that causes structural damage. A closet or storage area in the center of your home is a good choice. If you’re short on space inside the home, you can also store your earthquake kit in the garage.
You should also consider having at least a basic earthquake kit in your car, in the event of a quake that prevents you from returning home. Simple survival kits that fit in the glove box or trunk can provide you with at least the most essential items for a disaster.
For commuters, keep an earthquake kit at the office. Having a stash of emergency supplies on hand can help you be more prepared in the event of an earthquake while you’re at work. Choose a small kit that fits in your desk or a corner of your office so that you’ll have it close by and easily accessible.
How long do earthquake kits last when stored properly?
Most earthquake kits include storage instructions. It’s important to follow these directions to ensure the maximum lifespan for your survival kit, which is usually at least 5 years. Consumable items inside the kit, such as food and water, are usually the items that expire and require replacement. Tools, first aid kit supplies, and shelter items can last for years if they’re stored properly.
"Every six months, review the contents of your earthquake kit and disaster supplies," advises Kristin Stevens, Director of Climate and Disaster Resilience at Americares. "Replace any expired items. Make sure that names and phone numbers on your emergency contact list are up to date as well."
How long should an earthquake kit supply last?
Most survival kits include essential supplies for a 72-hour period, which is considered the most crucial time period immediately after a disaster. While most earthquake kits are 72-hour survival systems, some stretch this period to 144 hours or more for more long-term assistance.
Why Trust The Spruce?
Thie article was written by Erica Puisis, a lifestyle writer for The Spruce, Erica used insights from her personal experience in building a disaster preparedness kit to find practical, complete solutions. Then, to find the best earthquake survival kits, we bought and tested a number of popular models and applied the testers' evaluations to this roundup. To receive expert advice, Erica interviewed Kristin Stevens, Director of Climate and Disaster Resilience at Americares, who discussed about the typical supplies an earthquake kit should include, along with practical additions every household should make when buying a ready-made earthquake kit. In addition, we incorporated resources from the CDC, along with third-party reviews to identify products worthy of a spot on our list.