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With the end of May around the corner, that means the start of the Atlantic hurricane season is quickly approaching. In order to avoid rushing to prepare for inclement weather, it’s best to prepare for ahead of time. Here are some things to take care of before hurricane season begins:
Develop an evacuation plan: Before a hurricane impacts your home, having a plan on where to go ahead of time will save you much needed time when disaster strikes. You do not need to travel hours and hours away, but your safe place should be outside of flood prone areas. Also, do not leave your pets behind and include them in your plan. Check with local officials about transportation options in the event you do not have a car.
Assemble disaster supplies: Supplies will be needed no matter if you shelter in place or evacuate. Each person in your family should have a 3-day supply of non-perishable food and water, as well as medications. Keep extra cash handy, along with flashlights and a battery-powered radio to get the latest updates on the weather. A solar powered USB charger will also help make sure your cell phones stay on. If you have pets, include a supply of food and medications in your kit.
Double check insurance and document possessions: Double checking your insurance coverage will ensure you have enough to repair your home or belongings in the event significant damage occurs. Also make sure you have flood insurance as home and renters insurance do not cover flooding. The sooner you get flood insurance, the better, as there is a 30-day waiting period before coverage begins. When it comes to documenting possessions, retrieve photos, serial numbers or other important information that may be needed to file insurance claims.
Have a communication plan: Share your evacuation plan with your family and friends so they know where you will be evacuating to. Also, have a family meeting place in case you get separated. Have a list of emergency contacts, including utilities and other services, as internet and data may be inaccessible after a hurricane hits.
Reinforce your home: Take the time to catch up on yard work and trim potential problematic trees. Also install storm shutters, impact glass or accordion shutters as well. Seal any openings outside your home and reinforce your garage door as it is one of the most vulnerable parts of your home. Installing plywood, steel or aluminum panels on doors and windows will also help reinforce and protect your home.
Taking the time ahead of an approaching hurricane will allow you to leave in a moment’s notice when a hurricane is projected to hit your area. These tips could end up being life-saving for you or your family and friends.
Image by Paul Brennan from Pixabay