The U.S. has faced more traumatic hurricanes this season than it has in decades, and the unfortunate news is that the season isn’t over yet. The most important thing that you can do if you are in an area that is prone to hurricanes and tropical storms, is prepare. These storms are fatal and residents who live in areas expecting a storm should take precautions to either evacuate or ensure that they protect their home.
Based on information from the National Hurricane Center, the two factors that contribute the most to weather safety during hurricane season is preparing in advance for the potential storms and for people to act on these preparations when officials alert them.
Here are four important steps that everyone living in small island states should take into consideration before and during hurricane season.
4 Steps to Preparing for a Hurricane
- Plan to Evacuate
There are many people who choose to ride out the storm and stay in their home when a hurricane is closing in on their area. They may say that they’ve lived through the storms before, or don’t expect the situation to get that bad. That is one of the main reasons why so many people endure serious injuries during a strong hurricane.
People need to evacuate during a hurricane because of the storm surge. This is an unusual rise of water caused by the storm’s fierce winds. The surge can reach heights of more than 20 feet and it can span for hundreds of miles throughout the coastlines. It’s extremely unpredictable and anyone who is in the storm surge’s path would be in danger. That is why evacuation planning should be the first thing on everyone’s list.
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The local government in these areas provide residents with vital information regarding evacuation areas and plans. It is recommended that residents read up on these plans in advance. Some people will even test out the evacuation route before hurricane season begins so that they will know exactly where to go when the time comes.
- Purchase Supplies
If the storm requires residents to evacuate, everyone should have supplies on hand and ready to take along with them. Those who choose to wait until the last minute will not get the things that they need. Therefore, if you live in a storm area, you should always keep a hurricane kit handy that is easy to grab and go.
Some of the essentials that you should pack in your hurricane kit include
- A first aid kit
- Battery-powered or hand-crank radio
- Flashlight with batteries
- Whistle to signal for help
- Local maps
- Double-Check Your Insurance Coverage
All property owners should make sure that their insurance coverage protects them against flooding. That is something that many people do not think about, and think that they already have flood coverage, when it turns out that they don’t. That can lead to very expensive repairs if the home is in the path of a hurricane. It is important to find out this information, even if the home is not located along the shoreline. A home can still become flooded even during a heavy rain storm.
- Make Copies of all Important Files
All your important documents such as birth certificates, social security cards, and proof of ownership could be destroyed during a hurricane if they are left behind at home. Be sure to make copies of these and any other important papers you have and keep them in a safe, dry, area always.
When the next hurricane approaches your area, make sure that you keep yourself and your family safe by listening to the authorities and evacuating as quickly as possible to avoid serious injuries.