Preparing for a Hurricane
Hurricanes are NO joke! Until you have lived through one, you can not fully understand the impact a hurricane can make. We live in the middle of North Carolina but back in September of 1996, Hurricane Fran came right through our town. We had trees down everywhere. Power was out for a few weeks for some. Homes and cars were destroyed. THAT was in the MIDDLE of the state. Of course, the coast received a whole lot more damage but even counties inland were devastated by Fran.
Thankfully, for the most part, hurricanes are somewhat predictable (compared to earthquakes and tornados). Meteorologists don’t always know the complete path but there is a warning issued to start preparing well in advance. Here are some of the preparations you need to make when in the path of a hurricane.
Days Before the Hurricane
- Make a safety plan for during the storm. Practice any possible evacuation routes.
- Make sure you have all the essentials for grilling (propane tank filled and stored in a safe place during the hurricane for use after)
- Have all insurance papers handy, make sure you have flood insurance if you are in a flood zone.
- Make sure you have batteries and working flashlights (and/or candles)
- Freeze bags of water to fill in your freezer (you can use the water for drinking water if needed and keeps freezer colder longer)
- Buy non-perishables and eat up your perishables (freeze what you don’t eat but try to leave as much freezer and fridge space for water). Make sure you have plenty of pet food as well if you have pets.
- Make sure prescriptions are filled and in one location.
- Gas up your vehicles and any spare gas containers (the gas pumps will not work if the power is out plus gas lines/transport of gas can be effected at the coast during hurricanes)
- Take photos of any important documents (and photos) and send them to your email or iCloud. Computers and external hard drives can be damaged if your home is affected by the storm. Place all originals in a sealed waterproof bag and place inside a sealed plastic container for extra protection.
- Stock up on bottled water. Fill as many containers full of water and place in the fridge for use during and after the storm.
- Place any chairs, potted plants, bikes, yard decor, etc in a garage or shed.
- Catch up on any and all laundry.
- Charge any portable battery packs to charge your phones with.
- Shutter windows if you live close enough to the point of impact.
- Trim or cut down any trees that are dead.
- If you have pets and are in a location that you may need to go to a shelter, make they are up to date on all vaccinations and be sure to have all their vet records with you!
The Day Before Hurricane
- Fill the bath tub with water so that you will have water to flush the toilets if the power goes out.
- Make sure house is clean (if the power goes out, you will be glad the house was clean so you are not tripping over anything.
- Make sure laundry is done and dishes are washed.
Day Of Hurricane
- Unlock phones to allow quick phone access if needed (especially if you have children who may need to use your phone for emergency situations).
- Set all phone settings to low battery usage and make sure phone is fully charged.
- Unplug TV’s, computers and turn off AC to prevent power surges when the light starts to flicker.
- Put towels in the windowsills to prevent water being blown in during the storm.
- Park your vehicles under shelter, away from trees, and out of areas that could flood easily.