Hurricane Disaster Preparation Tips
Be ready for hurricane season. Today you can determine your personal hurricane risk, find out if you live in a hurricane evacuation zone, and review/update insurance policies. You can also make a list of items to replenish hurricane emergency supplies and start thinking about how you will prepare your home for the coming hurricane season. If you live in hurricane-prone areas, you are encouraged to complete these simple preparations before hurricane season begins on June 1.
What to do if a hurricane is in the forecast
- Prepare an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
- Know your surroundings, the elevation level of your property, and whether the land is prone to flood. Also, identify levees and dams that may pose a hazard.
- Learn evacuation routes.
- If in a high-rise building, be prepared to take shelter on or below the 10th floor.
Secure Your Property
- Cover all of your home’s windows. Permanent storm shutters offer the best protection for windows but 5/8” marine plywood, cut to fit and ready to install will provide protection.
- Install straps to fasten your roof to the framing structure.
- Keep trees and shrubs around your home manicured.
- Clean rain gutters and downspouts of debris.
- Reinforce garage doors to avoid structural damage from wind.
- Plan storage for outdoor furniture, decorations, garbage cans, etc.
- Pre-determine how to secure any boats.
- Install a generator.
- Consider building a safe room.
Hurricanes cause heavy rains that can cause extensive flood damage in coastal and inland areas. Everyone is at risk and should consider flood insurance protection. Flood insurance is the only way to financially protect your property or business from flood damage. To learn more about your flooding risk and how to protect yourself and your business, visit the Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration (NFIP) Web site, www.floodsmart.gov or call 1-800-427-2419.
Prepare an Emergency Kit
- Water, one gallon of water per person per day for three days (both drinking and sanitation)
- Food, three-day supply, non-perishable. Have high energy food, such as dried fruit, nuts and granola bars, and food that does not require cooking.
- Battery or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries
- Flashlights and extra batteries
- First aid kit
- Heating fuel. Refuel before you are empty. Fuel carriers may not reach you for days after a winter storm.
- Moist towelettes, garbage bags, plastic ties (personal sanitation)
- Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
- Manual can opener for food
- Local paper maps
- Cell phone with chargers, inverter or solar charger
- Make sure pets have plenty of food, water and shelter
Visit Ready.gov for more information on preparing, maintaining and storing your emergency kit.
Develop a Family Communication Plan
- Your family may not be together, plan how you will contact one another.
- Create a contact card for all family members and keep them in a wallet, purse, backpack, briefcase, etc.
- Check emergency plans with your children’s day care or school.
- Identify a non-local friend or relative household members can notify when they are safe, they may be in a better position to communicate between separated families.
- If you have a cell phone, program that person(s) as “ICE” (In Case of Emergency) in your phone. If you are in an accident, emergency personnel will often check your ICE listings in order to get a hold of someone you know.
- Text messages can often get around network disruptions when a phone call might not be able to get through.
We care about your safety! Please let us know if we can do anything, we are here for you. Please take care, heed the warnings and stay safe!