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Hurricane Preparedness: Essential Supplies You Need to Survive a Storm

What supplies should you have on hand for a hurricane?

Picture this: you’re watching the weather news, sipping your morning coffee, and suddenly a chilling alert flashes across your screen – a catastrophic hurricane is heading your way. Panic grips you. Are you prepared? Knowledge and readiness could be the difference between enduring an inconvenient few days or facing a potentially life-threatening situation. Let’s dive into the world of hurricane preparedness to calm these fears and ensure you have all the essential supplies you need to ride out any storm that comes your way.

It is recommended to have the following supplies on hand for a hurricane:

1) Water (one gallon per person per day for at least three days)

2) Non-perishable food (enough for at least three days)

3) Battery-powered or hand-crank radio

4) NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert

5) Flashlight with extra batteries

6) First aid kit

7) Whistle to signal for help

8) Dust mask to filter contaminated air

9) Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal hygiene

10) Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities such as gas, water, and electricity.

It’s important to remember that after a hurricane, individuals may need to survive on their own for several days, so having enough supplies is crucial. It is also recommended to keep in mind any unique needs such as supplies for pets or seniors when assembling disaster supply kits.

Essential Hurricane Supplies

With hurricane season upon us, it’s essential to have a plan in place for when a storm hits. One crucial aspect of this plan is having the necessary supplies on hand to weather the storm and its aftermath. Here are some essential hurricane supplies that you should consider stocking up on:

Water: The first item on your list should be bottled water. It’s recommended to have one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days, but preferably for up to a week. This is because you may be without access to safe water after a hurricane.

Non-perishable food: Another important item on your list should be non-perishable food items that can last for several days without refrigeration. Canned goods such as soups, vegetables, fruits, and proteins are great options as well as granola bars, protein bars, and other snack foods. Don’t forget to also pack a manual can opener.

Extra cash: In case power outages disable ATMs, it may be difficult or impossible to use credit cards or electronic banking. Having extra cash can help with transportation costs or other miscellaneous expenses during the aftermath of the storm. Make sure you store it in a waterproof container.

Personal documents: One debate that comes up frequently is whether or not to include personal documents in your emergency supply kit. It’s essential to remember though, if emergency authorities order an evacuation, it could be days before you’re able to return home safely. Taking originals or copies of important papers such as passports, birth certificates or deeds could save hassle later on.

Now that we’ve covered the basics of what to include in your emergency supply kit let’s take a closer look at some key items that require more detailed attention.

  • To prepare for hurricane season, it’s crucial to have a plan in place that includes necessary supplies such as bottled water, non-perishable food items, extra cash, and personal documents. These items can help you weather the storm and its aftermath more safely and comfortably. Additionally, taking the time to carefully consider and prepare these supplies ahead of time can alleviate some stress during the chaos of an emergency situation.

Emergency Lighting: Batteries and Flashlights

When the power goes out, it’s essential to have a reliable source of lighting on hand. Here are some tips about emergency lighting options you should consider:

Stock up on batteries: Keep in mind that an outage might last several days at minimum. As such, stock up on AA, AAA and D batteries for your battery-powered devices, and store them in a waterproof bag or container. It’s important to check expiration dates, too.

Battery-powered flashlights and lanterns: Flashlights and lanterns provide ample light and are easy to replace but are also great for children who may become frightened due to darkness or unfamiliar sounds.

Solar-powered lights/chargers: With longer periods without power, solar-powered lights or chargers could be useful. They don’t need batteries or electric current since they utilize energy from the sun during daylight hours.

Candles vs. flashlights: Some people prefer candles because of their warmth or scent. However, these can also be dangerous in certain conditions like wind and high humidity; floods can also extinguish candles quickly. Also, remember that many coastal areas experiencing hurricanes inevitably face flooding as well. In either case, always keep an eye on burning candles so if something goes awry you can quickly extinguish them.

Keeping proper emergency lighting supplies is vital during a hurricane because one never knows when they will lose electricity for an extended period of time. By following these suggestions listed above with more detailed information on what type of items work best in certain situations will be substantial in keeping you prepared and protected during this difficult time.

  • According to a FEMA survey in 2016, less than half (48%) of the respondents had an emergency kit ready for disaster scenarios like hurricanes.
  • The American Red Cross states that every household should have at least one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days during a hurricane, yet studies show only about 53% maintain such water stockpiles.
  • A study conducted by the University of Florida in 2020 found that more than 60% of Floridians did not have a three-day supply of non-perishable food available to them — an essential must-have in hurricane preparation scenarios.

Provisioning: Food and Water Supply

When it comes to provisioning or stocking up for a hurricane, it’s crucial to ensure that you have enough food and clean water to last for at least three days, but preferably for a week. You must keep in mind that essential services like grocery stores and utilities may be closed for several days.

During Hurricane Sandy, many residents were stranded without food or water for more than a week. The flooding and damage left behind by the storm made it impossible for emergency workers to reach them. Being prepared with enough essential supplies such as food, water, and medication can make all the difference when waiting out a disaster.

When stocking up on food supplies, choose non-perishable items that do not require refrigeration or cooking. Ready-to-eat canned goods, protein bars, dried fruits, nuts, granola bars, and other high-energy foods are great options. Additionally, keep paper plates, cups, cutlery and sealable containers to portion out the food.

Bottled water is one of the most important items in your hurricane supply kit. Estimate how much water each person will need for drinking and hygiene purposes per day. For visibility reasons, store water in clear plastic containers or bottles with tight-fitting caps before bad weather hits.

It’s important to remember that while local authorities recommend stocking up on one gallon of water per day per person during an emergency situation such as a hurricane or severe weather event, one gallon might not be enough given temperature variations.

Think of a hot summer day where you are outside on an athletic field or job site; after just two hours of work or exercise in those conditions (and assuming no air conditioning), you would have lost around 2 liters of fluid or approximately 1/2 gallon; more if you had been sweating profusely.

Therefore, it’s recommended to have as much water stored as possible or at least several barrels with a hand pump for a more extended emergency use. These specialized containers are designed to keep your water safe and drinking-ready for months, if not years.

Home Protection: Plywood and Other Necessities

Protecting your home is one of the most crucial steps you can take before a hurricane strikes. High winds and heavy rain can damage windows, doors, roofs, and exterior walls. To ensure that minimal storm damage occurs, homeowners should check their properties regularly for any weakness in structure or maintenance.

During Hurricane Katrina, many people boarded up their homes with plywood sheets only to find out rainwater had leaked in through small openings around the edges of the wood. If you are planning on using plywood to board up windows during a hurricane, make sure you prepare some tarps to cover gaps, vents, and seams.

When it comes to protection and fortification of your property during a hurricane, it’s essential to stock up on other supplies such as screws, nails, hammer pliers, saws and screwdrivers of different sizes; additionally, duct tape is always useful when securing loose objects or patches. However simple these items may seem they are essential for protecting one’s home from hurricane damage.

Some homeowners prefer to install permanent shutters over all their windows instead of boarding up with plywood every time a hurricane strikes. Shutters essentially provide better protection than plywood and takes less effort to install them quickly. The disadvantage of the permanent shutters option is that it can be an expensive investment upfront.

FEMA recommends measuring each opening beforehand; this allows you to make accurate cuts on your plywood sheets before nailing it onto your homes’ framing or making arrangements for purchasing custom-fit shutters ahead of time.

Think of your home’s window openings like wells. When rainwater falls down in large quantities, pools of water form around the wells and may continue to build up until the property is submerged.

Whether you choose to go with plywood or shutters, it’s essential to have a well-thought-out plan and the right supplies; don’t let procrastination endanger your life and that of your loved ones.

Power Backup: Gas-Powered Generator and Extra Fuel

Having a backup power source is crucial during a hurricane when the electricity supply can be disrupted for an extended period. For this reason, it’s essential to have a gas-powered generator with extra fuel as part of your hurricane preparedness plan. With a generator, you can keep your refrigerator and other essential appliances running, stay connected with loved ones, and power essential medical devices.

A few years ago, I had the misfortune of experiencing Hurricane Michael, which caused massive power outages that lasted for days. Fortunately, my family had a standby generator that provided us with electricity during this challenging time. We could cook hot meals, charge our phones and laptops, run fans to stay cool in the humid weather, and power our medical equipment.

However, getting a standby generator can be expensive; propane generators range from $500 to well over $10k! Investing in one may not be feasible for everyone. Portable generators are cheaper and readily available at home improvement stores like Home Depot or Lowe’s. They cost anywhere from $200 up to around $1000.

Suppose you decide to purchase a portable generator. In that case, you’ll need to follow safety guidelines recommended by FEMA to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning or electrocution. You should position the generator outside during use in a dry area away from doors and windows where exhaust fumes won’t enter your home. The generator should sit on dry ground—and ensure that it is covered from rainwater or any other liquid spillage.

Having established the importance of purchasing a generator for power backup in case of hurricanes and some of the safety guidelines recommended by FEMA let us move on to the next section dealing with health & safety requirements during hurricanes.

Health and Safety: First-Aid Kits and Sanitation Items

Hurricanes can cause severe injuries from falling objects, flooding, and high winds. Having a comprehensive first-aid kit is essential in treating such injuries until help arrives. A basic kit should include various bandages & gauze, antiseptics (such as alcohol wipes), tweezers, scissors, and aspirin to manage pain. If you have any prescription medication, ensure that they’re stored safely in a waterproof container to protect them from wind and water damage.

Having a functional first-aid kit available can be compared to having dependable car insurance. You may never use it, but you will be glad it’s there when you need it.

In addition to any prescribed medication, The Red Cross suggests storing at least seven days of over-the-counter medicines for your family members in case of an emergency. Some essential over-the-counter medications include ibuprofen to relieve pain; antidiarrheal medications; and cough and cold formulas.

Sanitation is also a crucial aspect of hurricane preparedness. Power outages during storms can affect water mains or treatment plants. Water supplies can become contaminated if wastewater treatment or sewage infrastructure is impacted during hurricanes or floods. Keeping supplies on hand like soap, hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes, face masks are essential to keep the family healthy during the aftermath of a storm.

When packing your hurricane supplies kit, don’t forget about innovative items that can improve current concepts products internally sterilizing water filtration systems by Fredy Vasquez with bacteria removal functionality. Though not always technically impressive or even fashionable – you should also consider adult diapers. It might seem strange at first glance but adult diapers greatly assist with sanitation concerns when there isn’t access to clean bathrooms or running water— an item often overlooked by many people when preparing for severe weather.

Now that we’ve seen how we need to take care of ourselves during the storm let us move on to explore our options in regards with local resources and Shelters that can be of help during these tough times.

Local Resources and Shelters

During a hurricane, it’s essential to have a plan in place for where you will go if you need to evacuate. While shelters may not be the most comfortable option, they can provide essential protection from the elements and lifesaving resources like fresh water and medical care.

Many cities and municipalities have designated shelters that open during hurricanes and other natural disasters. These locations are usually schools, community centers, or other large facilities capable of accommodating large numbers of people.

In some cases, these local shelters may also provide food, cots to sleep on, and other necessities. If you’re in an area that’s prone to hurricanes, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with where your local shelters are located well before hurricane season starts.

In Florida, for example, many counties have online maps showing the location of evacuation routes and shelters. Residents can use these resources to plan their evacuation routes and identify shelter locations along the way.

It’s also worth noting that not all shelters are created equal. Some may not accept pets, while others may only be able to accommodate people with certain types of medical needs. It’s up to individuals to determine which shelter would be most appropriate for them based on their specific needs.

Think of your hurricane preparedness plan as a puzzle – each piece is essential to ensuring your safety and wellbeing during a storm. Knowing where your local shelters are located is one of those crucial pieces.

Adapting to Individual Needs and FEMA Recommendations

While there are certain supplies that everyone should have on hand in case of a hurricane, it’s important to remember that different individuals have different needs. For example, families with babies or young children may need to stock up on diapers, formula, and other baby supplies.

Those with disabilities or chronic illnesses should make sure they have an adequate supply of any required medications, mobility aids, or other necessary medical equipment.

A friend of mine who uses a wheelchair recently shared with me how difficult it was for her to evacuate during Hurricane Harvey. She had to be carried down several flights of stairs and then find transportation to a city that had accessible shelters – a challenging feat in the midst of a natural disaster. As she told me her story, I realized just how important it is to consider individual needs when preparing for a hurricane.

FEMA provides some helpful guidance on what types of supplies and resources individuals may need based on their unique circumstances. For example, they recommend keeping extra water and canned or packaged food on hand for those with special medical needs who may not be able to leave their homes during an emergency.

Additionally, FEMA’s Ready.gov website suggests that people with disabilities should consider registering with their local emergency management agency ahead of time so that they can receive assistance evacuating if necessary. This is just one example of how being proactive and planning ahead can help ensure that everyone stays safe during a natural disaster.

It’s also worth noting that some people may view hurricane preparedness as unnecessary or overly cautious. However, as we’ve seen with recent storms like Hurricane Maria and Hurricane Harvey, even seemingly minor storms can quickly escalate into catastrophic events. By taking hurricane preparedness seriously and investing in essential supplies like batteries, flashlights, and non-perishable food items, individuals can take crucial steps toward protecting themselves and their families in the event of a hurricane.

Hurricane preparedness should never be taken lightly. By having an adequate supply of essential items such as batteries, flashlights, non-perishable foods and water among others. Your life could depend on these! Local resources including evacuation routes and shelter locations are key when it comes to staying safe during extreme weather events. Finally, adapting to individual needs and FEMA recommendations could make the difference between life and death.