Stock up on emergency supplies this weekend



From Friday, Feb. 26, to Sunday, Feb. 28, Alabama will observe the state’s 10th annual Severe Weather Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday. The three-day tax holiday gives Alabamians an opportunity to restock emergency supplies in their homes, workplaces, and vehicles.

Certain emergency preparedness items will be exempt from the state’s 4 percent state sales tax, and in some cities and counties, local taxes are waived on those items as well. The Blount County Commission passed a resolution exempting county sales tax while Blountsville, Cleveland, Hayden, Oneonta, and Snead passed resolutions exempting their municipal sales tax. Shoppers can save as much as 10 percent on these emergency supplies this weekend.

From 12:01 a.m. Feb. 26 to midnight Feb. 28, the tax-exempt items include the following priced at $60 or less:

• Flashlights, lanterns
• Battery-powered or hand-crank radio
• Batteries
• First-aid kits
• Cell phone charger
• Two-way radios
• Manual can openers
• Tarps and plastic sheeting
• Duct tape
• Fire extinguishers
• Tie-down kits, bungee cords, or rope

Other tax-free items include: Coolers, ice packs, plywood, window film, and smoke/fire/carbon monoxide detectors. Portable generators and power cords costing $1,000 or less are also tax-free. For a full list of exempt items, go to

“Severe weather can occur at any time, in any season,” said Alabama Retail president Rick Brown. “The tax holiday helps Alabama consumers remember to stock and prepare emergency kits to be ready when storms strike.”

Alabama Retail recommends having enough supplies in emergency kits to last 72 hours following a disaster. For information on what items to include in emergency kits, as well as steps to take before and after disasters, visit