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EDEN's Ready Tips > Posts > Preparing for Hurricanes

152841W5_NL_sm.gifLeonard Pitt's column in the August 21, 2012 Miami Herald issue focused on his experience during Hurricane Andrew twenty years ago. It was during the storm and in the closet with his wife and five children that he felt the likelihood of his own death. He and his family survived, but his home and most of his belongings did not. 

In 1995, Hurricane Opal made landfall as a Category 4 hurricane October 4 near Pensacola and than travelled up the entire state of Alabama. It caused devastation throughout its path from Central America (the hurricane first landed on the Yucatan Peninsula) through New England. How did Opal afffect you? 

You can take action to reduce your vulnerability to hurricanes and increase your safety. Your safety and the safety of those in your family and your work environment are most important.

In the days before the storm arrives...

  • Decide where you will store lightweight items, such as lawn furniture, garbage cans, trampolines, bicycles, and yard tools. Check your yard for other items that may become projectiles in high winds.
  • Review your evacuation plan with your family. If you have pets, identify pet-friendly hotels along your evacuation route.
  • Update your emergency contacts list. Include an out-of-state contact. This person can serve as your family's check-in contact. Call to let him/her know your status following a storm.
  • Update your emergency supplies kit.
  • If you have a generator, check for good working conditiion.
  • Trim shrubs and trees to reduce chances of debris hitting your home.
  • Take an inventory of your home. Digital pictures and a list will be invaluable if you have damage. Make sure the list is in a safe place.

When a watch (tropical storm or hurricane conditions are possible) is issued for your area...

  • Listen to radio, television, or your NOAA Weather Radio for official bulletins of the storm's progress.
  • Fuel and service your vehicles.
  • Ensure you have extra cash on hand, check to ensure important papers are easily accessible and safe from water.
  • Prepare to cover windows and doors with protective materials.
  • Check batteries and stock up on water and non-perishable food, first aid suppoies, and medications.
  • Bring in lightweight items.
  • Plan to leave if you live in a mobile home, live on the coastline, an offshore island or near a river or flood plain, or live in a high rise building on or near the coast.
When a warning (tropical storm or hurricane conditions are expected) is issued for your area...
  • Closely monitor the radio, television, or your NOAA Weather Radio for official bulletins of the storm's progress.
  • Cover windows and doors.
  • Move items that may get damaged if your home floods. 
  • If you live in a mobile or manufactured home, stay with friends or relatives in a more secure building, low-rise inland hotel or at a designated public shelter.
When evacuation orders are issued...
  • Follow instructions issued by local officials.
  • Notify neighbors and a family member outside of the warned area of your evacuation plans.
  • Take pets with you if possible. Remember that most public shelters do not allows pets other than those used by people with disabilities. Identify pet-friendly hotels along your evacuation route. 
If you go to a shelter, you'll need to take...
  • First-aid kit
  • Medicine and prescriptions
  • Toiletries
  • Games, books, music players with headphones
  • Battery-powered radio and cell phone
  • Flashlights and extra batteries
  • A blanket or sleeping bag for each person
  • Identification 
  • Copies of important papers such as insurance policies
  • Cash, credit card
  • Special needs items such as baby food, diapers, and hearing aids
If you stay in your home...
  • Turn your refrigerator to maximum cold and keep it closed.
  • Unplug small appliances.
  • Turn off utilities if told to do so by authorities.
  • Turn off propane tanks.
  • Fill bathtub and large containers with water in case clean tap water is unavailable. Use water in tubs for cleaning flushing only.
For these and more details, see Tropical Cyclones: A Preparedness Guide.


Comments

Re: Preparing for Hurricanes

2/27/2013 8:24 AM
this site is great