If you live along coastlines one of the most dangerous things you can do is to not be prepared for a hurricane or tropical storm. There are two key factors that the National Hurricane Center says contributes to being safe during a tropical storm or hurricane, these are preparing in advance and to act on those preparations when they are alerted that a storm may impact their area.
One of the main reasons that people have to evacuate their city during a tropical storm or hurricane is due to a storm surge. These surges cause an abnormal rise of water that is generated by the storm’s winds and they can reach heights over 20 feet and can reach as far inland as 100 miles. The local government is able to provide the public with information about evacuation areas and give them the evacuation plan for that area. It is recommended that the evacuation information is reviewed well before a storm is due to hit the area. It is important that everyone in the household is aware of where the evacuation shelter is located and the evacuation routes of your city. It is a good idea to make a family emergency communication plan. This plan will outline who your family will get emergency alerts and warning, how they will get to safety, how to get in touch with each other if there is no cell service and make a meeting place.
Buy supplies well in advance and keep those supplies on hand should an evacuation be required. Those who are living in an area that is an evacuation area should keep a hurricane kit handy and store it someplace that it will be easy to grab and take with them in case they are required to move to an evacuation shelter. Even though the shelters provide supplies to those that are there. They can get overrun and may not have enough supplies for everyone.
Your hurricane kit should contain:
- A first aid kit
- A battery-powered radio or hand-crank radio
- Extra batteries
- A whistle to signal for help
- Local maps
- Make copies of important documents such as, proof of ownership documents for your home, car, ETC.
- A copy of your medical insurance card
- A list of telephone numbers
- Cell phone charger
Renters and property owners alike should make sure that they insure their homes against flooding that can occur during a tropical storm or hurricane. Most people do not realize that flood insurance is not a part of their standard home or renter’s insurance policy. You can contact your home or renters insurance provider to add flood insurance to your home.