In the aftermath of storms or natural disasters, you’ll need a variety of tools and equipment to help clean up and get back to normal. Here are 20 of the top items you’re going to need to keep on hand to make sure that you’re properly supplied.
With broken glass, fallen trees, and all sorts of debris all around and in need of removal, you’re going to need a thick pair of work gloves to make sure that your hands don’t get torn to shreds.
If you’re having to dig through rubble, such as after an earthquake that causes buildings to collapse, you’re going to want to have a respirator to keep yourself from breathing in harmful dust that can tear up your lungs.
Dust can get into your eyes too, which is why you’ll want to have a good set of work goggles in order to protect your eyes from damage.
Removing heavy debris can be dangerous, particularly if you slip and fall, or if you drop something on your feet. Make sure that you have sturdy boots that will protect your feet and toes, and that have a thick, grippy sole to give plenty of traction in wet or muddy conditions.
5. Thick Clothes
Canvas and jean clothing has the right thickness to keep from tearing or abrading when in contact with rough materials. Ripstop cotton or cotton/poly blends could be useful too.
You may need to break up large pieces of concrete or rock in the aftermath of natural disasters, and a sledgehammer is just the tool to help you do that.
If large trees come down and need to be cleared immediately, a chainsaw is the tool for the job. Make sure that you keep your chains sharpened and oiled, and have plenty of gas on hand to run your saw.
8. Ax or Tomahawk
For smaller trees and branches, having an ax or tomahawk available for chopping can be very handy.
9. Crow Bar or Pry Bar
If you’ve boarded up windows in advance of a storm, you’ll want to have a crow bar or pry bar to help remove them. The leverage that they afford can help you in a wide variety of situations.
10. Claw Hammer
This is just your standard hammer, handy for removing nails that need removal and nailing down anything that needs to be kept in place.
Pliers will come in handy when you need to grip, bend, or pull anything.
Screwdrivers or bit sets will be a necessity in order to remove screws of varying sizes.
A variety of wrenches, from pipe wrenches to crescent wrenches, will come in handy to loosen or tighten nuts and bolts.
A good shovel will help you clear soil and debris and help get back to normal.
If you have to move trash and debris, save your back and arms the effort of carrying heavy objects. A good wheelbarrow will help you move tree stumps, rocks, and other debris out of the way.
16. Trash Bags
You’ll probably have a good deal of debris that needs getting rid of. Having plenty of large, thick trash bags on hand will help you separate the trash from what needs saving.
A tarp, or several, will be helpful in keeping sensitive objects covered, or covering over broken windows or holes in roofs.
18. Duct Tape
There’s just about nothing that duct tape can’t do. Make sure you have a roll or two on hand because you’ll always be able to find a use for it.
19. Plastic Buckets
5-gallon buckets are dirt cheap at Home Depot, so pick up a few. They can be used to bail out flooded basements, transport liquids and solids, or store your possessions that you salvage from a damaged home.
Glass or plastic jars can come in handy for storing small parts that you may need to save for later but don’t immediately have the space for.