Disaster Preparedness Checklist (Special Needs)

The First Tennessee Area Agency on Aging and Disability (FTAAAD), in conjunction with the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency (TEMA) and other First Tennessee area service agencies, has put together a disaster preparedness guide specifically for Tennesseans age 60 and older. The basic list of items, found under Disaster Preparedness Checklist, does not cover special needs. The list on this page does.

Just like the basic list, the items on the following list should be collected and stored together in a specific space. In an emergency, you may not have the time or the conditions to hunt for these things. Use a plastic trash container, a duffle bag, a backpack, or something similar with an attached ID tag.

Pet supplies: food, water, leash, litter box, plastic bags, medications, plastic gloves

Infants: formula, diapers, bottles, pacifiers, plastic bags and ties, moist towelettes, toys, etc.

Contact your area Power Company with a list of all electrically-powered life-support equipment.  Also, check with your medical supply company for information regarding a back-up power source such as an additional battery or generator.

Have an alternate plan prepared if your home health caregiver cannot reach your home.

Complete a contact list, including emergency instructions, listing important information for use by you and those assisting in an emergency. 

Home inventory: If you have one, place a copy of it with your personal items in your disaster preparedness container. If possible, take pictures with a digital camera and save copies of those pictures to reliable media, like a CD or DVD. *Flash drives, or thumb drives, are easily damaged or lost and are not reliable in emergencies. 

Medical equipment: have canes, walkers, wheelchairs, motorized wheelchairs/scooters (with extra battery supplies) placed in your home for easy access during a power outage or other emergency. If special medical supplies (such as oxygen, syringes, IVs, feeding tube equipment, etc.) are needed, please maintain a minimum 7-to-10-day supply of all items.

Deaf or hearing-impaired: store pens or pencils and paper with your emergency supplies.  Also, having pre-printed cards that state if you use ASL (American Sign Language) or lip-read might be beneficial for those assisting you.

Service animals: In the event of an evacuation to an American Red Cross shelter, service animals are allowed to accompany their owners in the shelter.  Only service animals will be allowed in the shelters.