One moment, you’re sitting at home enjoying quality time with your family.
Next, you’re receiving a hurricane warning.
In emergencies such as this, it’s all too easy for anxiety to take hold. After all, you may have concerns for your family’s immediate safety, looking after your pets, or even reinforcing your property to reduce potential damages. Either way, the most important thing to do in this scenario is to keep your cool.
Your ability to stay calm will set the tone for the rest of your household, which means it will enable you to keep your family safe. It also means you can formulate a plan.
With that in mind, here are some of the steps you should take in the event of a hurricane.
1. Protect your home.
Hurricane warnings are typically issued 36 hours in advance of the incident, though this can vary. As such, you should begin your preparations by taking steps to protect your home. For example, you should tie down any outdoor furniture, bringing things inside where possible. This means these items will not be lost to the storm, or cause damage to the rest of your property. If you live in an area where storms are a common occurrence, you may want to install Impact Windows. These windows are stronger and more durable than typical glass windows, meaning they’re less likely to shatter on impact – therefore protecting your home.
2. Gather emergency supplies.
Whether you will be heading to an evacuation site or staying at home (the decision should be made based on official guidance and advice), you should ensure that you have any necessary emergency supplies to hand during this time. This should include non-perishable food and drink, medications, first aid supplies, and backup power sources such as portable chargers, torches, and lamps. You should also gather together important family documents such as passports so they are not misplaced.
3. Ensure vulnerable family members are cared for.
If any members of your family are particularly vulnerable, such as elderly people who live alone, ensure that somebody is taking care of them during this event. You should also ensure they have their own emergency supplies set aside in the off chance that such an event occurs, so that should the worst happen they are not without access to crucial things such as food, water, and medication. If you do not live close by, reach out to their friends and neighbors who may be able to offer more immediate assistance.
4. Follow all official advice.
As mentioned above, any decisions that you make regarding your activity during a hurricane warning should be based upon official advice from local governing bodies or experts. For example, if they advise against trying to evacuate, you should avoid traveling. Remember the guidance they share is in your best interest. While power outages are common during storms, try to find as many ways as possible to stay connected during this time. For example, you should listen to local news and radio stations, or follow advice shared through social media platforms.