Although some locations in Florida are hit by hurricanes more frequently than other areas, The Florida Climate Center reports that every part of the Florida coastline has been impacted by a hurricane at least once. This means that all Floridians need a plan and hurricane protection in place to keep their family members, their homes, and themselves safe each hurricane season.
When preparing for a hurricane, even if you choose to shelter in place, it’s important to be ready well ahead of time. No matter where in Florida you call home, here are the top four hurricane preparedness tips to keep in mind.
Tip #1: Stay informed
If there is the possibility of a hurricane making landfall anywhere near you, make sure you are paying close attention to the news, including updates from the National Hurricane Center. From day to day a hurricane’s trajectory may change, and it could be closer or farther away than you think.
Although changing your plans because of a hurricane can be a hassle, your safety and the safety of your family come first. During a hurricane watch, it’s best to leave if you can, and you should always follow government evacuations orders. With roads getting clogged with traffic, and flights being booked (and then canceled as the storm approaches), it is necessary to leave sooner rather than later. Make sure your gas tank is filled and your bags are packed to ease the stress of a possible evacuation.
Tip #2: Gather supplies
If you’re planning on sheltering in place, make sure your house and your family are equipped to handle at least three days of sheltered living.
Suggested supplies to have for sheltering in place during a hurricane:
- Bottled water. FEMA suggests one gallon of water per day per person. This equates to twelve gallons for a family of four if you are planning on three days.
- Camp Stove and non-perishable food. Canned items and a stove to cook them can make everyone feel more comfortable and cared for if the power goes out. If you have perishable food, it’s advised to cook it first before you use your non-perishable store.
- Medications and medical supplies. Make sure you have any prescription medications and medical supplies, such as an emergency kit, at hand.
- Backup generator. If possible, consider investing in a generator in case the power goes out.
- Gasoline. Have gasoline safely stored and accessible to power the generator or to use for your car should you need it.
- Pet Supplies. Have enough food and water for your pets as well as carriers, leashes, and other necessary supplies to last for at least 3 days.
The storm will pass eventually, but it could take days for the power to come back on, or for the flooding to recede. Make sure your supplies are usable and accessible before the storm hits.
Tip #3: Pack a Bag
Having a bag ready to go for hurricane season is a great idea. Even when sheltering in place, it is necessary to have a bag packed in case damage to your home is so great that you must leave after the storm is over. No hurricane preparation plan is complete without a packed bag.
This bag should include:
- ID’s for yourself and your family members
- Important documents like insurance papers, birth certificates, social security cards, and vaccination records for pets
- Cash in case the power is out and you have to pay for things without credit or debit cards
- A change of clothes
- Personal hygiene items- toothpaste, toothbrush, soap, etc.
- List of important phone numbers
- External hard drives with important documents off computers or of family pictures in case electronics are damaged in the storm
If you have younger children, you can save yourself a headache if you pack their bags at the same time. This will help you stay organized, as far as knowing which items were packed in each suitcase. Keep these packed bags in a protected space, such as in a closet or storage space, near the door you plan on evacuating from during an emergency.
Tip #4: Exterior Protection From Impact Glass to Hurricane Shutters
Having protection for your home in place can give you peace of mind during hurricane season. Exterior protection from strong winds, flooding, and fallen trees can come in many forms.
The types of hurricane preparation for the outside of your home include:
- Hurricane impact windows and storm shutters can protect your family and the interior of your home from harm due to broken glass and flying debris.
- Impact doors that are reinforced with thick fiberglass and wood composite to withstand hurricane-level winds.
- Impact garage doors to protect your vehicles and other valuables stored in your garage.
- Screens for lanais to protect the large open weak point of your home without sacrificing functionality.
Your Hurricane Protection Experts
Hurricane season starts June 1st for Southwest Florida. The time to protect your property is now. Storm Solutions can help you to put in impact windows, doors, and garage doors, so you can feel ready for even the big ones. We also offer impact glass and shutters to prepare your home and protect your property and possessions as much as possible before a hurricane makes landfall.
Property can always be replaced. You and your loved ones cannot. During a hurricane make sure you care for your family and loved ones. Learn more about our protection product information to find out how Storm Solutions can help you.