The Atlantic hurricane season begins on June 1st and is trending to be more active than usual. It’s essential to be prepared for any natural disaster before it happens. Getting organized and having a plan in place will make it easier for you and your family when severe weather hits.
Create a Storm Plan
If you have not already done so, create a written disaster plan with your family and have them all review it. It should include:
Marked emergency exits
A meeting place near your home (building, known landmark, park, etc.)
The location of emergency kits
If the family gets separated during a big thunderstorm, hurricane, hail storm, or other weather events, have them meet at the designated location when it is safe to do so. Assign a relative or trusted friend as an emergency contact person and make sure each family member has their contact information.
Ensure all adults and older children know how to shut off gas and water mains to reduce the risk of additional damage to your home and belongings.
Make an Emergency Kit
Every family should have an emergency kit, which should be in backpacks or other easy-to-carry bags. The emergency kit should include:
- Manual can opener
- Non-perishable emergency food
- Bottled water (1 gallon per day per person)
- Disposable camera
- Battery-powered flashlight
- Extra batteries
- Emergency phone number list
- First aid kit
- Essential medications
- Change of clothes for each family member
- Important papers (copies of identification, bank information, etc.)
- Credit cards and cash
- Battery-powered or hand-crank portable radio
Check the bag periodically to ensure nothing is expired, batteries still work, contact information is still accurate, and credit cards have not expired.
Prepping Before the Big Storm
When a potentially severe storm is forecast, pay attention to the local news to stay informed. If evacuation orders are issued, follow them.
Prepare your home to prevent damage by:
- Putting away outdoor toys, furniture, tools, and anything that could become a flying object
- Turn up your refrigerator and freezer to keep perishable items cold in case of a power outage
- Close and secure storm shutters or cover windows and exterior glass with plywood
- Make sure you pack emergency kits and that they are ready to go
- Review the evacuation plan with your family
- Fill your car with fuel in case you need to evacuate
If you receive orders to evacuate, unplug appliances and turn off the electricity and other utilities. Consider moving furniture and valuables from the ground floor to a higher level in case of flooding. Make sure the doors are locked and bolted behind you.
Do not leave pets behind to fend for themselves in a storm. Ensure your emergency kit includes food, water, a pet carrier, or a leash for your pets. Include a copy of their most recent veterinary records and make sure their ID tags and collar are on them. If you can, leave them with a trusted friend or kennel your pets in a location away from the impending big thunderstorm or natural disaster.
After the Big Storm
Suppose your home is damaged after the storm. In that case, it may be a good idea to call in the professionals at Allied Restoration in Gambrills, Maryland. Our licensed, bonded, and insured remediators can assess the damage caused by water, fire, and smoke.
We work with your insurance company to get your home cleaned quickly and effectively to minimize the damage to your home and belongings. Keep our contact number handy and make it a part of your emergency kit so you can contact us at the first sign of storm damage.