Hurricane Season Preparation Guide
Hurricane season is here, which means it’s time to make sure you’re fully prepared. The Atlantic hurricane season typically runs from June 1 through December 1. The peak occurs in late August and runs through September. Whether you’ve lived through hurricanes all your life or you’ve recently moved to a hurricane hotspot, you should never treat this time of year too lightly. Fingers crossed that we have a light hurricane season, with only a few tropical storms or depressions. But you never know when a high category storm might come, so now is the time to be prepared so you’re not scrambling to react.
2020 was an active hurricane season, breaking the record for named storms with 30. It was so active that storms had to be named after letters of the Greek alphabet because they exhausted the list of 21 regular names that are prepared for the hurricane season. The damage that these storms cause is no joke, as the average annual expected economic losses caused by hurricane winds and storm flooding total $54 billion.
Here are some of the keys to being prepared for the hurricane season:
Know Your Evacuation Route
In the event that your home is in the path of a major hurricane, you may be forced to leave if an evacuation order is given. Figure out if you live in an evacuation zone and make a plan for where you’ll go if you must evacuate. You could ask to stay with family or friends who live outside the evacuation area, or go to a hotel if you have no other options. If you’re going to go out of town for your evacuation, make sure to plan it far in advance so you can give yourself ample time to leave before the storm comes. Evacuation often results in high amounts of traffic, so you’ll want to be prepared to move quickly.
Stock Up On Non-Perishable Supplies
Whether or not you anticipate evacuating, you should make sure to have all the supplies you need on hand before the storm comes. Purchase non-perishable food items, water, and any medicine your family needs far ahead of time. You should also stock up on must-have items like flashlights, extra batteries, matches, first-aid supplies, and a portable radio. Don’t wait until the last minute, because these items will vanish off the shelves of your local stores the moment a hurricane starts coming your way.
Assess & Secure Your Home
If you haven’t taken the time to do so already, do a walk around your home to assess if anything needs to be secured ahead of a storm. Look at your roof, windows, garage door, and yard to determine if any action needs to be taken to secure your home. For example, you might want to install window shutters or trim your landscaping to minimize the chance of high winds damaging your home with debris.
Make A Plan For Your Pets
With all the attention being paid to your plan and home security, you might forget about your furry friends. If you have any pets, take the time to gather all the necessary supplies you’ll need if you have to take them with you on the road. Consider having a pet carrier ready to go, along with extra bags of food, treats, medicine, toys, and litter. This can be a stressful time for your pet as well, so prepare everything they’ll need to be comfortable if you have to stay somewhere else for a while.
Secure Your Vehicle
Taking the steps to secure your vehicle in the event of a storm should be one of the most important items on your hurricane preparation checklist. Review your insurance coverage to ensure it’s up to date and store your insurance documents in a waterproof bag to prevent them from getting damaged. Take pictures of your car before the storm to make it easier on yourself if you have to submit an insurance claim, and park your car on high ground or in a garage to keep it away from floodwater or falling trees. If you are evacuating and there is any maintenance that your vehicle needs, now is the time to replace those worn-out tires, wiper blades, or car battery. You might also consider putting together an emergency road kit, with items like a tire jack, tool kit, jumper cables, gas canisters, and motor oil. Finally, make sure your car has a full tank of gas at least a few days before the storm because there will be massive lines at your local gas station.
Hopefully, this has given you a good head start on your hurricane season preparations. For a more detailed checklist, check out national and local resources such as Broward County’s Hurricane Preparedness Guide. Just like how you should have a plan for hurricane season, you should have a plan if you ever find yourself in a car accident. If you or someone you know has been the victim of a careless or reckless driver and has been injured, call 1-800-411-PAIN and get the help you need! We will refer you to the attorneys that will fight to get you the compensation you deserve and the medical attention you need. If you have been hurt in an accident, call 1-800-411-PAIN, and we will guide you in finding you the best medical and legal professionals.