Every hurricane season, no matter what lessons history has taught us, some people fail to take the necessary precautions against these powerful storms. While we can’t stop them from coming, they are predicted, well in advance, giving everyone a chance to prepare.
If you live in a hurricane area, hopefully, you have already prepared your home for the next storm. Shutters, or plywood, readily available to cover windows is a must. If you are replacing roofs, or building an entirely new structure, then you are well aware of new construction techniques that are being used to anchor down roofs, and secure homes to their foundations. Many people have storm shelters, concrete block buildings, or underground bunkers, if storm surge is not a problem.
Awareness is the key to survival in any weather situation, tornado, flood, blizzard, or hurricane. Keep in touch with weather bulletins and advisories. The alerts are meant to give you ample warning as to where the storm will strike, when, and with what intensity. TV and radio announcements also advise on when it’s time to evacuate, and where to go for emergency shelter in your area.
Before the storm season arrives, you should have an emergency survival plan. Even if it isn’t necessary for you to leave your home, you may very well be without power, water, or a way to get supplies for a few days, or weeks. Having a well stocked pantry, a good supply of bottled water and emergency lighting is a must. A good generator, and a supply of gasoline can be a life saver, as long as you know how to operate this emergency power supply safely.
Have a family survival plan. During an upcoming storm, be aware of where everyone is, and where they need to meet in the event of evacuation. Have your car filled with gas, and important papers, packed and ready to go. Deeds, insurance papers, marriage and birth certificates, are all difficult and time consuming to replace if they are lost.
If you are weathering out the storm at home, take anything out of your yard that may conceivably become a projectile during strong winds. Make sure that everything is battened down, and stay inside. News reporters are often seen facing hurricane winds, but you shouldn’t try this at home. Flying debris is one of the biggest causes of injury during storms.
Have an emergency radio with you at all times. This may be your lifeline, when power is out, for advisories, weather alerts, and necessary information. Once you have weathered the storm, take into consideration that there may well be downed power lines and flooding. Stay away from all wires, and do not try to drive through areas that are under water.
If you prepare for the worst, and have a plan, you have the security of knowing that you have done everything you could before a storm strikes. Hopefully, you may never have to put it to use.