7 Tips For Hurricane Preparedness This Season
With the devastation from Harvey, Irma, and Maria dominating the news in the latter part of 2017, it’s no doubt hurricanes are on the minds of every home owner. The best way to prepare for a hurricane is to prepare well in advance of hurricane season. In the event of a hurricane, the National Hurricane Center recommends only two courses of action: Prepare for risks in advance and act immediately on any warnings issued from emergency officials. Hurricane preparedness is key to prevent serious damage in the path of a storm.
1. Take Before And After Pictures Of Your Property For Insurance Purposes.
Most experts that have years of hands-on hurricane experience, recommend this tip as the first and most important step homeowners can take to protect against weather damage in all seasons.
2. Keep Trees Trimmed.
Pruning trees and shrubs before a hurricane approaches can reduce the debris generated during a storm. Proper tree pruning also increases the chances that a tree can make it through a storm and possibly stay off your house. This needs to be done far in advance. You don’t want that debris adding to what might fly around.
3. Be Sure All Outdoor Power Equipment Is In Good Working Order.
If necessary, take any equipment to an authorized service center for repair or maintenance. Having this equipment available after a storm could be a matter of life or death, power tools that can cut branches or remove debris can save a life or even be useful in clearing passage for emergency vehicles.
4. Find Your Water Shut-Off Valve.
It’s important to locate your shut-off valve and confirm it’s operating properly before a storm hits. It’s very important to have the ability to turn off your water in an emergency. It can prevent potential leaks and damage caused by a storm.
5. Assemble An Emergency Kit.
The emergency kit should include first aid supplies, a flashlight, extra batteries, at least three days of non-perishable foods and water, towels and a supply of any necessary medications. Stay informed of the storm’s path and progress by monitoring Wireless Emergency Alerts via text message and having a battery-powered radio or TV available.
6. Establish An Evacuation Route.
Prior to a storm, contact your local American Red Cross to locate the shelter nearest you or download their Shelter Finder App. Identify the safest route to get there. Be sure to check if your local emergency shelter allows animals and family pets.
7. Protect Financial Documents.
In the event of a disaster, you will need identification and financial documents to begin the recovery process. Safeguard important documents in a bank safety deposit box, computer storage devices (USB drive, CD/DVD), and/or waterproof storage containers, including: Personal identification (driver’s licenses, birth certificates, military IDs, passports, etc.), Financial account information (checking, savings, retirement and investment accounts, credit/debit cards), Insurance policies on all personal property, including appraisals and lists and photos of valuable items, Ownership or leasing documentation for homes and vehicles (deeds, titles, registrations, rental agreements, etc.), All health and medical insurance documentation.