Preparing for Hurricane Season
2018 was yet another above-average year in terms of hurricanes, causing nearly $50 billion in damages. When the next hurricane season begins on June 1, 2019, will you be prepared? Especially if you’ve never thought about preparing for hurricane season, or even if you’re a seasoned pro, here are some important, simple and affordable steps that you can take proactively now to make sure that you, your loved ones and your property are best prepared in case of a major storm blowing into your area.
- Food and water. We recommend keeping a stockpile of non-perishable foods and sources of fresh water that are separate from your normal pantry stores for daily living. It’s probably best to keep a week’s worth on hand for emergencies, just in case you were to be stranded due to a major hurricane catastrophe situation. You’ll just need to do the calorie and water math for your family: 2,000 calories per day for each adult plus at least one gallon of potable water per day per person for drinking and hygiene. Overestimate here, because as the old saying goes, “it’s better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it!” And, don’t forget to stock extra for your pets! They’re part of the family too, after all. Store these critical supplies in a place where they will be protected but still accessible. A closet or cubby beneath a staircase might be ideal.|
- Shelter and heat. Keep a tent (or tents) on hand that will be big enough to accommodate your family, both two-legged and four-legged. Emergency fire starter kits and other sources of heat like propane are readily available and very affordable. You’ll also want to keep some blankets, sleeping bags, coats and other warming supplies on hand, even if you live in a tropical region. Hurricane season extends all the way to November 1, and don’t forget that hurricanes can affect northern states too! All of these items are simple purchases that could literally save your life – remember, exposure to the elements and the inability to heat your food and purify your water could prove deadly in a disaster survival situation. You’ll also want to think about the boards, nails and other supplies you’ll need to protect the windows and other parts of your home in case you have enough warning before the hurricane to make those kinds of preparations.
- Clothing and medication. Pack a “go” bag for each of your family members with everything they’ll need for an emergency road trip. This would include a few changes of clothes, toiletries, and some sort of reminder to pack up the remaining medications that they need. If you have any meds that require refrigeration, you’ll also want to preposition an alternate way to cool them with your emergency supplies. This could be as simple as a small cooler that you could fill with ice from your freezer before you leave in the event of an evacuation. Pack light, but pack smart: once you’ve gathered all of the supplies mentioned above, you should take an hour and practice loading your vehicle(s) and rehearse the evacuation plan with your family members. Children especially will do so much better in the event of a disaster if you’ve talked about it beforehand.
- Other supplies and steps. Don’t underestimate the importance of the small accessories that could be game-changers during an evacuation: think about flashlights (both handheld and headlamps), batteries, cell phone chargers, water purification tablets or filtration systems, survival knives, road maps (in case your smart phone is suddenly dumb due to the lack of cell phone coverage), a supply of cash (in case your credit cards suddenly become only pieces of plastic), any other treasured items, and anything else that’s particular to your family’s needs.
Making a checklist of all the items you need and designating a specific spot where most or all of these items will remain throughout the year will make a world of difference if you’re facing an evacuation. We suggest making a shelf area in your garage where your luggage and supplies will sit. This will not only make the loading process much smoother and less stressful in an emergency situation, but it will serve as a visual reminder throughout the year of the need to be prepared for any contingency. Your proactive thinking and planning now could save your life later, not to mention the lives of the people and animals you love. Take a few hours now before hurricane season arrives to make sure that you’re truly prepared for any disaster situation, and we know you’ll rest easier knowing you’ve done all you can to protect yourself and your family!
More info? For information on household storm hacks and preparing for a storm, read our other post: HOUSEHOLD STORM HACKS YOU PROBABLY DIDN'T THINK ABOUT
Call 877-957-5670 to schedule an appointment with an AdvantaClean water damage specialist today!