"We are not as prepared as we could be in this country," says Nancy Ward, FEMA Region IX Administrator. "A go bag can save and sustain your life." Start by picking the bag: "Make sure it's durable and easy to carry," says Ward. She recommends something waterproof, like nylon or canvas, especially if you live in a flood-prone area. "And make sure it's big enough so you can get everything into that one kit." Keep the bag in an easily accessible place. "For no-notice events like earthquakes and tsunamis, you need to act instinctively and get to the kit," says Ward, who adds that she keeps one go bag at home and one in the car for roadside emergencies. “If you're out and you can't get home, you have something in your car to sustain you."