Emergency Preparedness: Hurricanes

It is imperative that you have necessary preparations in place for hurricane season (June 1st – November 30th). Although preparing in advance is a small time investment, having everything in order will allow you to devote time to last-minute items should you find yourself under a Hurricane Watch or Warning. It is not uncommon for local grocery and hardware stores to run out of supplies in anticipation of a storm, so avoid being last minute in your preparations.

Ideally, everyone should have shutters and a secure way to lock down your home, but you at least can make sure you are prepared in every other way:

  • Make sure to inventory your valuables and keep this list in a safety deposit box. This includes property deeds, marriage/birth certificates, social security cards, stocks and bonds or other portfolio information, passports, wills, medical records, and insurance policies
  • Make a reference list of everything you would absolutely want to take with you should you have to evacuate your home so that you know exactly what to grab on a moment’s notice
  • Compile a list of contacts that you would want to stay in touch with throughout the storm. Decide who will take what roles, and where and when to meet should phone services be out. Many people will use an out of town contact that may be easier to reach than a local one
  • If your area is placed under a Watch, make sure you wash all dishes and run the dishwasher. Also make sure that your laundry is washed and clean sheets and towels are being used. You don’t know when power may be restored, and this will avoid you running out of clean clothes too soon
  • Be sure to have cash on you as you may not be able to find operating ATMs after the storm
  • Fill up your car with gas, and potentially purchase a portable tank to bring extra gas as evacuation traffic can be slow
  • Make sure to have adequate supplies such as food and water (1 gallon per day, per person) for everyone in your household. Don’t forget the manual can opener! A good rule of thumb is to have enough supplies to last you for seven days
  • Be sure to have plenty of supplies for your baby, including formula (powdered), diapers, clean bottles, wipes, and baby food
  • Don’t forget to have all medications filled and readily available
  • Battery-powered radio or television and flashlights are key. Don’t forget batteries for these devices
  • Purchase a car charger for your phone
  • Make arrangements for your pets and have adequate supplies for them as well
  • Take adequate measures to account for any climate changes

Taking just an hour out of your day to develop a Hurricane Plan will ensure safety and confidence during a potentially dangerous situation for you and your family.