As the first anniversary of Superstorm Sandy approaches, many of us now appreciate the wisdom of hurricane preparedness. Hurricane preparedness can preserve your peace of mind–and your safety–against the danger and disruption caused by fierce winds and heavy rain.
As a storm begins its approach, create a safety plan for throughout the event. First, gather materials for a “Go Kit” that includes:
- water (two to three gallons per day per person);
- nonperishable food;
- flashlights and batteries;
- medication (prescription and over-the-counter);
- mobile phone chargers;
- First Aid kits;
- cash or travelers’ checks; and
- a form of ID.
Optional Go Kit items include a can opener, hand sanitizer, a whistle, dust masks, a battery-operated radio, moist towelettes, plastic sheeting and duct tape.
Next, discuss evacuation plans with your loved ones. Know warning signs and evacuation routes, and arrange:
- a safe harbor for all pets (do not leave them trapped inside or to fend for themselves outside);
- a family communication plan including emergency contact information;
- a meeting spot in the event of a separation;
- a friend/relative’s house or motel that is in a safe location; and
- where to seek shelter for various hazards.
Protect Your Property
Finally, prepare your home in case of an evacuation. Before evacuating:
- turn off all water, gas, and electricity;
- fill vehicles with gas and check the oil and tires;
- secure plastic bags over TVs and computers; and
- leave behind a note that details your whereabouts, contact information and the location of your pet(s).
When a hurricane has the potential to cause severe damage, it’s natural to feel concerned. But hurricane preparedness can help guard your safety, your loved ones and your home.