Hurricane Preparation for Dummies
November 19, 2021
Preparing for hurricanes is essential to minimize their impact. Hurricanes can be very destructive, and even a little preparation can greatly decrease the risk to homes and businesses, and save lives. Preparation ensures that you’re ready for a hurricane and aren’t caught by surprise. It also guarantees that you’ll have the essentials to survive the storm, such as food and a way to communicate with others. Such evasive action is highly recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). During a press conference at the National Hurricane Center in Miami Florida in early 2021, Deanne Criswell, the administrator of FEMA stated that “as we enter peak hurricane season, it’s critical that communities stay vigilant to the severe threats storms can bring.”
Sebastian Lozano, a junior at The Village School, was among the millions of people impacted by Hurricane Harvey back in 2017, one of the most destructive hurricanes to make landfall in the Houston area. Lozano detailed how preparation helped his family stay safe.
“We were very well prepared for Hurricane Harvey, and had stocked up on all of the usual prep supplies,” said Lozano. “We even had a plan for evacuation just in case. Our house eventually flooded but we were able to escape relatively unharmed. I imagine things would’ve been much worse if we hadn’t taken the necessary steps to prepare.”
Water Bottles– $6
Get a supply of water bottles to make sure you have enough water for at least three days as the hurricane may disrupt water lines.
Acquire enough food to last three days as the streets will be flooded and leaving the house is not an option which makes going to a grocery store impossible, so stocking up on food is the only option for having a steady supply.
Handheld Radio -$60
This device will allow you to listen to what the news networks are advising and will give information on the future weather in your area without a need for a fully connected signal. This specific one can also be used as a portable charger.
A multipurpose will always come in handy in case you don’t have the proper materials to keep yourself safe and cut yourself out of dangerous situations. This Swiss Army knife has the basic necessities for a multipurpose tool and will be able to help out a lot if needed.
First Aid Kit-$35
A first aid kit is a must as injuries that may not be avoidable have to be treated. Because of this, it is important to purchase a first aid kit to treat these injuries.
Your phone is incredibly important as getting a signal at some point will allow you to receive help and let others know if you are doing alright. In case your phone runs out of battery it is important to have reserve batteries with a portable charger so that you don’t need to worry about your battery level.
Extra batteries will be highly recommended as battery powered appliances that may be beneficial to keeping you safe will have reserves that can keep you powered for days.
Garbage bags will be necessary to keep trash and other items from piling up near your house and will assist with the post-hurricane clean up. They can also keep items safe from the water which may be important to some as there are important things they may own that are negatively affected by water.
It is a wise idea to keep some non-perishable foods handy in case of an emergency. It will allow you to have some food in store without any worry of it expiring soon. This will allow you to ration the food much more efficiently.
This flashlight provides a strong light with a high battery life which will allow you to have light for hours.
A poncho will keep you safe from the rain and is incredibly portable. It will allow you to store it wherever and use it anytime you need.
Rain boots will keep your feet from soaking and will allow you to keep your feet dry.
How Should you Prepare for a Hurricane?
Now that you understand the potential and historical damages that tropical storms cause, it is important to take initiative and prepare for when you are faced with this threat. According to the National Weather Service, it is important to “know your zone.” Some areas and locations may be more prone to flooding, so it is important to know the level of danger that you might be in if a storm were to arrive. Look to see if you are in a hazardous area, using this link: https://myzone.zonehaven.com/. Depending on the risk zone in which you find yourself, can assist you in developing an effective and safe evacuation strategy. It’s also crucial to know your house’s escape routes in case the tropical storm becomes too strong for you to stay inside. Lastly, it is important to ensure that you have the proper utilities and materials to stay safe during the storm. You Can learn more about what you need to buy on the sidebar to the right.
During a hurricane, remember to know your escape plan, and follow the safety procedures given by the zone that you are in. If you are ever put in a situation that is directly threatening your safety, and it seems that there is no clear and safe escape, do not be afraid to ask for help. If you are in a position where your house is not flooded, still keep off the streets and sidewalks, as that is still extremely dangerous during a hurricane.
Here are a few tips that you should take if you are preparing for a hurricane before having to utilize an escape plan:
- Ensure that outdoor furniture is moved indoors in order to prevent potential water hazards in the case that your zone floods
- Shield windows – there may be a chance that the wind during a hurricane can shatter and break your windows. This can be extremely dangerous if not dealt with.
- Be on the lookout for power outages. If you lose electricity during a hurricane, having supplies on hand will allow you to survive under harsh conditions. Having canned food, water, and a first aid kit are three of the many things that you need to be properly ready for a hurricane. Please refer to the FEMA’s emergency supply list.
- Trim the trees surrounding your house. In the event of a hurricane, it is common that nearby branches may break from the tree and become flying hazards for you and your neighbor’s house.