The majority of our clients live in South Florida and so hurricane preparedness is a necessity. Hurricane encounters are inevitable and you want to be ready whenever one occurs. A hurricane is a powerful storm that develops over warm, tropical waters and can sustain wind forces of 39 mph or higher. Hurricanes can bring heavy rains, flooding, and heavy winds capable of damaging property. In Florida, we are especially vulnerable to hurricanes. Hurricane season is roughly from June 1st to November 30th, but hurricanes can arise before or after these days.
1. Check on your insurance. (Months in advance)
- Verify that you have a Flood Insurance policy.
- Look over your Homeowners Insurance policy with your agent or with us to make sure your properly covered.
2. Hurricane preparedness is essential. The steps you can take to stay safe include:
- Create an evacuation route and be ready to leave the area if necessary. Several of our clients stayed in Georgia or North Carolina during 2017 hurricane Irma (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hurricane_Irma).
- Locate nearby shelters in case you are unable to evacuate.
- Note the safest room in your house, preferably with no windows towards the center of the house.
- Keep important documents in a safe place or upload digital copies.
- Purchase a generator to use after the power goes out.
- Create an emergency kit.
3. Your emergency kit should include (from ready.gov). (Weeks in advance)
- Water– one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation
- Food– at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
- Battery powered radio with back up batteries
- First aid kit
- Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation
- Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
- Manual can opener for food
- Local maps
- Cell Phone, chargers, and backup batteries
- Extra cash
- Food for pets
- You can find a great full check list on FEMA’s website here: https://www.fema.gov/media-library-data/1494007144395-b0e215ae1ba6ac1b556f084e190e5862/FEMA_2017_Hurricane_HTP_FINAL.pdf
4. If a hurricane is approaching. (Days in advance)
- Put up your hurricane shutters, close your shutters, or board your windows.
- Trim trees and shrubs as well as clear gutters.
- Bring in outdoor furniture and decorations, these are often thrown around or at least damaged.
- Fill your bathtub before a storm for flushing and washing only.
- Fill gas cans for back up gas and for the generator.
- Be sure to fill your gas tanks on your cars far in advance of an approaching storm, waiting until the last minute can leave you with long lines or no gas at all.
- Turn on your TV and check the forecast periodically for weather updates and emergency instructions.
- Charge your cell phone batteries.