Hurricane Season 2014-How to Prepare an Emergency "To Go" Box!

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Hurricane Season 2014-How to Prepare an Emergency “To Go” Box!

With the 2014 Hurricane Season here, preparation is key.  In a previous hurricane 2014post I wrote about 10 important things that we can all do now to prepare for the season.  One of those was to prepare an Emergency “To Go” Box.

You don’t have to live in an area known for hurricanes.  Having a box or backpack that you have ready to go in the event you need to leave your home….. floods, tornadoes, gas leaks, fires, and other emergencies.

How to Prepare an Emergency “To Go” Box

1. Sit down with paper and a pen and think about the day to day things you and your family would need if you had to leave your house.

Besides food and water, you will want items that you will need to exist and that you might not be able to find or purchase.

Remember, the normal places we would go for supplies may be closed or without power… places such as your grocery or hardware store, your bank or any ATM.  

2.  Consider where you live and the type of emergency you might encounter.

Those of us who live in Florida, would want protection from the rains, sun and mosquitoes, for example, after a hurricane.  

3  Now this is important:

There are items you will want to go in that boxbut you need on a daily basis, but you don’t want to try to gather those things when you’re frantically trying to leave.  Make a list of those items and keep it where you can find it.. taped on the box or on your fridge, you’ll know.

4. Store it in a place where everyone will know where to find it.

If each person has their own Emergency “To Go” box or backpack, make sure it is not buried in the back of their closet.

Hurricane check listThings to include:  This is your Emergency Kit, so tailor it to fit your needs.  Also keep in mind that you may be without power for several days or more!

* A First Aid Kit

* Flash lights and batteries

* A battery operated radio and batteries

Note- if you can find the self-powered flashlights & batteries, even better.

*  Headlamps- they free up your hands when you’re stumbling around your dark house.

*  Emergency cash- ATM’s may not work.  Don’t grab a stack of hundreds or twenties either.  Make sure you have some smaller currency and coins.

*  We love our GPS’s but don’t rely on them.  Make sure you have a real road map, paper and pencils.

* Have a list of telephone numbers, especially those of your insurance agent!  Don’t rely on the contact list on your phone!

* Extra clothing, contacts, glasses.  Make sure you have sturdy shoes and lightweight windbreakers.

* Medications and a list of what you take.

* Tools- items such as a knife, scissors, duct tape, lighter and matches, large trash bags.

* Cooking items- a can opener, utensils and paper plates, paper towels, wipes, etc.

* Important papers, smartphone & tablet chargers, external hard drives or any other computer backups.

*Current photos of your family members and photos of your rooms and what they contain.

Personalize your Emergency “To Go” box to fit your needs.  As you read this, you probably thought of items that your family would need.  

The important thing is that you make a list and put your Emergency box together.







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  1. Bobbie Smith 06/04/2014 10:21 PM
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Lenn Harley
Lenn Harley,, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate - Leesburg, VA
Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland

You have got to be the most prepared person in the State of Florida. 

One thing I've never understood is why we see folks putting up window protection hours before a storm arrives. 

Supplies sell out and folks are frantic for plywood or water.

Jun 04, 2014 10:13 PM #3
Bobbie Smith
Stroudsburg, PA

This is a fantastic list Kathy and a Great Point too. "Everyone should have one" to be prepared for whatever may befall you and your home.

Great post.

Jun 04, 2014 10:17 PM #4
Amanda Christiansen
Christiansen Group Realty (260)704-0843 - Fort Wayne, IN
Christiansen Group Realty

This is all great advice Kathy.  Thanks for sharing and stay safe down there!                              

Jun 04, 2014 10:19 PM #5
Noah Seidenberg
Coldwell Banker - Evanston, IL
Chicagoland and Suburbs (800) 858-7917

Hi Kathy, this could be a life saver. You never know what a tornado, hurricane or bad storm is coming so be prepared.

Jun 04, 2014 10:31 PM #6
Roger D. Mucci
Shaken...with a Twist 216.633.2092 - Euclid, OH
Lets shake things up at your home today!

BARFF, I am so glad I do not have to worry about this stuff, but it's a great list for those who do.

Jun 04, 2014 10:46 PM #7
Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Hello Kathy,  I will pass this on to my sister in St. Agustine, Fla.  I know she does not have one.

Jun 04, 2014 11:09 PM #8
Silvia Dukes PA, Broker Associate, CRS, CIPS, SRES
Tropic Shores Realty - Ich spreche Deutsch! - Spring Hill, FL
Florida Waterfront and Country Club Living

Hi Kathy, great idea, being prepared and ready to go is important so you don't have to hunt for these items last minute.

Jun 04, 2014 11:13 PM #9
Kristin Johnston - REALTOR®
RE/MAX Realty Center - Waukesha, WI
Giving Back With Each Home Sold!

Even though I don't have to worry about hurricanes here, it is such great info to know

Jun 04, 2014 11:26 PM #10
Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR
Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate

Hi Kathy,

Excellent suggestion ..a go box is a must in your area..better be safe than sorry!

Jun 04, 2014 11:41 PM #11
Mark Loewenberg
KW of the Palm Beaches - Palm Beach Gardens, FL
KW 561-214-0370

always need a todo list when the storms are a coming towards us!  but we are not getting anymore correct?

Jun 04, 2014 11:52 PM #12
Suzanne De Vita
Online Associate Editor

I so wish I had this to-go box during Sandy! This is a well thought out list, Kathy. Thank you!

Jun 05, 2014 12:18 AM #13
Tom White
Franklin Homes Realty LLC (615) 495-0752 or - Franklin, TN
Franklin Homes Realty LLC, Franklin TN

Kathy, hurricanes are not on our worry list, but tornadoes certainly are this time of year. Thanks for some great ideas!

Jun 05, 2014 12:25 AM #14
Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Sheila- thank you.  You don't have to live in a hurricane zone to have some kind ofemergency box. 

Beth- thank you.  Let's keep our fingers crossed for a quiet year for Florida!

Lenn- I'm from Houston and lived through hurricanes there.  I learned quite a lot from Hurricane Andrew.  I guess I took my girl scout years seriously.. LOL.   and yes... I am always amazed at the number of people who show up on the news the day after the hurricane complaining that they don't have any water. 

Bobbie- Many people were without power for several weeks here in Florida during one hurricane.  You have to be prepared for that. 

Jared and Amanda- they say it's supposed to be a quiet year but who knows. 

Noah- just think, if you live out in California where they have wild fires.  Would you be prepared to leave?

BARFF- You should send this to Tony. 

Will- chances are she'll never need itbut it just takes that one time. 

Silvia- after Katrina, I read of someone who was rescued from the rising waters and still forgot his wallet and his important papers behind. 

Kristin- thankfully, you don't!  

Dorie- if you never have to use it.... that's ok!

Mark- if you say so!  LOL

Suzanne- who'd have thought that such a storm could hit your area!

Tom- it could be any reason you'd have to leave your home!


Jun 05, 2014 02:11 AM #15
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


I appreciate your dedication in emphasizing  the importance of being prepared, and your logical presentation.  A

Jun 05, 2014 02:59 AM #16
Patty Da Silva, Davie, Southwest Ranches Cooper City, Plantation, Weston, REALTOR
BROKER of Green Realty Properties® - 954-667-7253 - Davie, FL
Top Listing Broker

Another great precaution blog. Thanks for this very helpful points Kathy. Have a great day!

Jun 05, 2014 03:21 AM #17
Jeffrey DiMuria 321.223.6253 Waves Realty
Waves Realty - Melbourne, FL
Florida Space Coast Homes

Great list Kathy...this is very important for anyone who lives along the coast.


Jun 05, 2014 04:56 AM #18
George Souto
George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages - Middletown, CT
Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert

Kathy I never thought about a To Go Box, but now that you mention it, it makes sense.

Jun 05, 2014 10:24 AM #19
James Dray
Fathom Realty - Bentonville, AR
Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results

I prepare by watching the TV of all those people boarding up their homes and leaving the area.  Personally I would still like to live there but it won't happen

Jun 05, 2014 07:45 PM #20
Conrad Allen
Re/Max Professional Associates - Webster, MA
Webster, Ma, Realtor

You better be prepared in your community Kathy.  The weather can be brutal.

Jun 05, 2014 09:08 PM #21
Dee Toohey
Innovative Realty Solutions Group - Longwood, FL
Broker, ABR, AHWD, CIPS, FMS, ePro

Terrific information for preparing for hurricanes.  Thank you for sharing!

Jun 05, 2014 11:08 PM #22
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Kathy Streib

Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224
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