Hurricane Season Preparedness
Because the tropics and weather can tend to be so unpredictable, there is no better time to make sure that we are prepared.
Here are a few terms that we can brush up on:
Hurricane Watch – Hurricane Conditions are a threat within 48 hours. You should review your hurricane plan and get ready to act if a warning is issued. Make sure to stay current on the latest forecasts and hurricane coordinates.
Hurricane Warning – This means that Hurricane conditions are expected within 36 hours. Complete your storm preparations and pay attention to any curfews or evacuation orders issued by authorities.
As we very well know from past storms it is also important to have the proper supplies since we do not know when the roads or stores will reopen after the storm.
Below is a sample Hurricane Supply Kit list.
- Water – Keep at least a 3 day supply on hand; One gallon per person per day
- Food – Keep at least a 3 day supply of non-perishable, easy to prepare food on hand. When selecting your food, keep in mind what cooking source or cooling source you will have access to should the power be out. For example: Do you have a gas stove or electric stove? Do you have a grill?
- Extra batteries, charged power banks
- Battery-powered or hand-crank radio
- First Aid kit
- Keep a 7 day supply of any medications as well as any other medical items such as hearing aids with extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, canes, oxygen.
- Multi-purpose tool
- Sanitation and personal hygiene items
- Copies of personal Documents including but not limited to: Medication list, pertinent medical information, proof of address, deed/lease to home, passports, birth certificates, insurance policies
- Cell phone with chargers
- Family and emergency contact information
- Extra Cash
- Emergency Blanket
- A map of the area
- Baby supplies (bottles, formula, baby food, diapers)
- Pet supplies including but not limited to collar, leash, ID, food, carrier, bowl
- Tools/supplies for securing your home
- Extra set of car keys and house keys
- Extra clothing, hat and sturdy shoes
- Rain gear
- Insect repellent and sunscreen
- Camera for photos of damage
After making sure your supply kit is complete it is important to also take a survey of what you can do to secure your home.
While keeping a close eye on the weather
- Survey your yard for anything that should be picked up and placed inside or secured such as bicycles, Lawn furniture, Lawn decorations and Toys.
- Close windows, doors and hurricane shutters. If you do not have hurricane shutters, close and board up all windows and doors with plywood.
- Turn the refrigerator and freezer to the coldest setting and keep them closed as much as possible so that food will last longer if the power goes out.
- Turn off propane tanks and unplug small appliances.
- Fill your car’s gas tank.
- Pickup sand bags to place around your doors if a large amount of rain is expected.
- Talk with members of your household and create an evacuation plan.
- Be familiar with your community’s hurricane response plan. Know the routes to local shelters, register family members with special medical needs as required and make any arrangements to make sure your pets are cared for.
Follow any evacuation orders by authorities. Be careful to avoid flooded roads, washed out bridges and downed power lines. In addition to all of the important information above, take some time to read over your insurance policy. Be familiar with your deductibles and the insurance company’s claim phone number close at hand. Also, be aware that homeowner’s policies do not offer coverage for flood damage. Now is a good time to speak with your insurance agent and secure a flood quote, since floods are not only limited to high risk flood zones. Any area can flood. It is better to be prepared.