Hurricane Season 2019 Begins on June 1...What You Can Do NOW!
The 2019 Hurricane Season begins on June 1 and runs through November 30. By all accounts, it should be a near-normal season. Even if you’ve been through a hurricane and know what to expect, you know that the best thing you can do is organize and prepare NOW, before a hurricane is headed our way.
I’ve been through no fewer than 9 hurricanes (I lost count) and can tell you that with each hurricane, I learn something new to add to my list for the next hurricane.
Here are 12 things you can do NOW to prepare for the hurricane season.
1. Have a Plan
There’s nothing like knowing a hurricane is coming to instill panic in those who have not made any plans. Know what you will do if a hurricane comes. Know what your options are.
Make a list!
If you are new to the area, make sure you know where your evacuation routes are. Your local television stations will have up-to-the-minute information.
2. Check Your Insurance Coverage
Call now and know exactly what is covered in the event of a hurricane. If you do not yet have the proper coverage, it’s important to know that once we are under a hurricane watch or warning (depending upon the state you live in) insurance companies will suspend underwriting coverage for a period prior to and after the hurricane hits.
If you have them, check them to make sure you have all of the pieces and know how to install them. If you will need assistance, find someone who will put them up for you.
Check your home generators and know how to work them. If you have one for the house that uses propane, make sure it is full. And, be in touch with your supplier and know what they’re prepared to do if there is a prolonged outage.
You probably already have non-perishables in your pantry but it’s a good time to take stock of these. Anything that will not need refrigeration or need a microwave or oven is good.
Buy a case or gallon jug of water every time you go to the market. Remember-one gallon a day per person.
Check your flashlights, batteries and any other emergency equipment you might need. If you’ve stored batteries in a flashlight that you haven’t used in a while, be sure to check that there’s no corrosion.
Note: Invest in a headlamp for handsfree lighting!
6.Trim Now and Edit Outside
Don’t wait until a hurricane is coming to trim trees and shrubs. You’ve probably noticed all of the tree trimming companies in your area. There’s a reason for this! My whole street had all of the trees trimmed several weeks ago.
Your local municipality will not be able to pick up your trimmings just before a hurricane and if they’re left at the curb, they become projectiles.
And because you’ll want to bring in anything that could be a flying projectile, it’s a good time to edit plantless pots and extras that you don’t need.
7.Know Where the Shelters Are
In the event you will have to evacuate, know where your local shelters are. If you have pets, you’ll need to find a shelter that accepts pets and know what information you’ll need to bring.
8. Check Your Emergency “To Go” Bags
Everyone needs a bag that you can grab at a moment’s notice. If you haven’t prepared one or looked at it since last year, find it and check it out.
9. Take Photos and Videos
We see our home every day but could you list everything you have in every room? Take photos and videos and it’s not a bad idea to store them with a relative off-premises. (or upload them somewhere they’ll be safe.
10.Know Your Numbers
So much of what we have is in the clouds these days, but if power and the internet are out you will need to have those numbers at hand. You can put them in your To Go bag and you can also make sure a trusted relative or friend outside of your area has a copy.
Without looking would you know the phone number of your closest friend or relative?
11. Prepare Your Car
Should you have to evacuate, you need to depend upon your vehicle. Make sure that any maintenance you’ve deferred is taken care of such as tires and your battery.
This is important-you should have emergency items (flashlight, first aid kit, etc) in your car at all times but you should also have a road atlas or map as well. If you have to evacuate, an Atlas comes in handy if you have to take a detour. It’s a lot easier to see alternate routes on an Atlas than it is on a small smartphone.
12. Download Government and Emergency Alerts on your phone.
These actually come in very handy. During Hurricane Irma we were alerted at 2 AM to a tornado in our area.
Don’t wait until the last minute to make sure that you, your home, and your family are prepared!