JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -

National and local governments have made it clear that residents of Florida and other hurricane-prone parts of the country must be prepared to care for themselves without assistance for at least 72 hours.

Many people complained that help came too slowly during the past hurricane seasons, but officials have reiterated that for at least three days following a storm, no one should expect any kind of help from government agencies.

Emergency officials said that 72 hours is the minimum amount of time that residents should prepare for. They recommend that residents be prepared to sustain themselves even longer -- up to two weeks.

Below is a list of the supplies to keep on hand during hurricane season:

Water

  • One gallon of water per person per day (additional water for bathing, etc.)
  • Store water in clean plastic containers

Food

  • Purchase foods that require no refrigeration and little preparation, such as:
  • Ready-to-eat canned food
  • Canned juices, milk, soup (if powdered, store extra water)
  • Snacks: cookies, cereals, etc.
  • Soft drinks, instant coffee, tea
  • Lots of ice (you can freeze your water supply)

For baby

  • Formula, bottles, powdered milk, jarred baby foods
  • Diapers, moist towelettes and special medications

Pets

  • Newspapers or cat litter
  • Moist canned foods (to preserve water)
  • Plastic sheets to cover floor of pet's room

Medicine

  • First aid kit
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Aspirin, non-aspirin pain reliever, antacid
  • Extra prescription medication (especially for heart problems and diabetes)
  • Ask your physician how to store prescription medication
  • Personal Items
  • Toilet paper, towels, soap, shampoo
  • Personal and feminine hygiene products
  • Denture needs, contact lenses and an extra pair of eyeglasses
  • Sun protection, insect repellent

Other Supplies

  • Battery-operated radio, flashlights, non-electric can opener, extra batteries
  • Charcoal, waterproof matches, extra propane gas for grills (Use grills outside only!)
  • ABC-rated fire extinguisher in a small canister
  • Portable cooler
  • Plenty of absorbent towels, plastic trash bags
  • Wind-up or battery-operated clock
  • Tarp or sheet plastic, duct tape, hammer and nails for temporary roof repairs
  • Cleaning supplies such as chlorine bleach
  • Aluminum foil, paper napkins and plates, plastic cups
  • Can of spray paint (can be used to identify your home by insurance adjusters in case it's damaged)
  • At least one change of clothing per person, sturdy shoes, hat and work gloves
  • Pillows and blankets or sleeping bags

For more information on hurricane supply kids, visit: American Red Cross | Ready America