Hurricane 101: Florida Edition
Okay South Floridians, it’s that time of year again! We are officially under “Hurricane Watch” which means hurricane conditions are possible in the area. Watches are issued 48 hours in advance of the anticipated onset of tropical storm force winds so whether you are an old pro or a newby to these types of storms, it can’t hurt to brush up on your hurricane readiness skills! Here are some helpful preparation tips from Collins and Company. For more details, click the link below.
Recommended Hurricane Supplies:
o Non-perishable food (enough to last at least 3 days)
o Water (enough to last at least 3 days)
o First-aid kit (include any prescription medication you may need)
o Personal hygiene items and sanitation items
o Flashlights (have extra batteries on hand)
o Battery operated radio (again, have extra batteries)
o Waterproof container with cash and important documents
o Manual can opener
o Lighter or matches
o Books, magazines, games for recreation
o Special needs items: pet supplies and baby supplies if applicable
o Cooler and ice packs
o A plan for evacuation and for if family members are separated
Securing Your Home
o Cover all of your windows, either with hurricane shutters or wood.
o Although tape can prevent glass from shattering everywhere, be warned that tape does not prevent the window from breaking.
o Make sure all trees and shrubs are trimmed and clear rain gutters.
o Reinforce your garage doors.
o Bring in all outdoor furniture, garbage cans, decorations, and anything else that is not tied down.
o If winds become strong, stay away from windows and doors and close, secure and brace internal doors.
In the event of Power Outages
o Gas: Make sure your tank is full far in advance of an approaching storm. Most people wait until the last minute, rush to get extra gas for cars and generators, and subsequently gas stations can run out early.
o ATMS: Have extra cash on hand in the event no ATMS in your area are accessible or working.
o Cell Phones: Charge your cell phone and limit use after power is out.
o A/C: This can be the most uncomfortable side effect of losing power during a storm. Try to prevent as much light from entering and warming the house by covering up your windows on the inside. If you have back-up or battery operated fans, don't run them unless you are in the room. Fans create a difference in perceived temperature but do not cool the room; instead they create a cooling effect by dispersing the heat off your skin. It is said they can actually add heat to a room just by running.
o Water: Fill bathtub and large containers with water for washing and flushing only.
o Food: Turn your fridge temperature down and/or freeze any food or drinking water that can be frozen if you expect a power outage. Have a cooler with ice packs prepared to cool your drinks and snacks after power has been out for more than 4 hours. And importantly, check out this food safety guide for when to discard your perishable food: http://www.foodsafety.gov/keep/charts/refridg_food.html