Steps to take before and after a Hurricane Hits

Steps for hurricane insurance preparedness is something you learn quickly when living in an area that is vulnerable to hurricanes. Hurricanes can be very fickle. They can be heading for a certain area then turn at the last minute and move in another direction. Preparations should be made several days in advance of the approaching storm to avoid rushing around at the last minute.

Those who live in hurricane-prone areas know first hand how quickly the stores can run out of essential supplies. It’s foolish and even dangerous to take the “wait and see” attitude when a hurricane is approaching the state. Store shelves can empty within hours during a hurricane threat.

Before the hurricane season begins, make sure your emergency supplies are fully stocked with enough for each household member. The recommended time to prepare for is three days. However, in light of the devastation caused by the numerous weather-related catastrophes that have swept through the nation over the last decade, it’s obvious that three days is not enough. Power could be out for up to a week or more.

Grocery and home stores in the area could be hard hit and it could be several days before supplies are replenished. If the water supply is contaminated it could be weeks before the problem is resolved. Pharmacies could be hit which could be life-threatening for some such as insulin-dependant diabetics.

As climate change increases, storms are becoming more intense which is why every home should always have a good emergency supply, especially areas that are vulnerable to hurricanes. The following is a list of basic supplies one should always have stored in the event of a natural disaster.

– Battery operated lights and radios with an ample supply of batteries

– Drinking water

– First-aid-kit and prescription medications

– Food which requires no refrigeration, including baby food and pet food if it applies

– Garbage bags and paper towels

– Tools such as hammers, screwdrivers, and pliers

– Full tank of gas

– Toothbrushes and toothpaste

– Toilet paper

– Manual can opener.

– Bedding such as blankets and pillows

– Tarps

– Car charger for your cell phone

– Matches or lighters

– Cash

– Clothes

– Mild soap (bar or liquid)

When a hurricane is approaching the state, even if it’s not predicted to hit your particular area, the following steps should be taken.

1. Inventory your emergency supply and make sure it’s complete. Replace old batteries and any food products that might be nearing the expiration date.

2. Take digitally dated pictures of your home inside and out for insurance purposes. Add them to all of your important documents and store them in a plastic ziplock or waterproof container.

3. Gather anything outside that could become a missile in heavy wind such as lawn chairs and garbage cans. Store or batten them down.

4. If you live in a low area, get sandbags from the local fire department to keep water out of your home.

5. Fill the gas tank in your automobile and extra gas for a generator if you have one.

6. Make sure your radios and car phone charger are functioning correctly.

7. Contact friends and relatives. Get together on a route in case you have to evacuate. Make sure you have all of the recent phone numbers.

8. If you decide to ride out the storm, make sure to park your automobile on high ground in case of flooding. Be careful not to park beneath a tree which could fall or drop a limb on it.

9. Prepare a mini survival kit with food, water, and other essentials you may need in case you need to go to a shelter.

10. Having done all of these things, watch the updates and track the storm.

After the storm

Even if your home is damaged during the storm your supplies should still be there and they will be a blessing to you especially in worse case scenarios. Use caution when going outside because downed power lines can kill. Also, poisonous snakes have been known to take lives after a severe storm so carry a stick as you walk around surveying the damage to make sure there are no snakes lurking beneath the debris. Visually check electrical wires going into the home and check the roof for damage.

Lastly, emergency supplies should be replenished after the emergency and kept updated.