The longer you live in Florida, the higher your chances are that you will experience a hurricane! While most Florida natives have a general idea of what they need to do, you can never be over prepared. Ask anyone who has lived through a hurricane and they will tell you, preparation is key!
Basic Hurricane Preparedness Tips:
- Know where you will evacuate. Having maps and designations of local hurricane evacuation routes is extemely hepful during the stressful situation of having to evacuate your home. Have a plan where you will stay and what supplies you will need to bring with you.
- Be in the know. Sign up for text or email alerts for emergency notifications on weather events and hurricanes.
- Organize your disaster supply kit. What should it include? Important documents (social security cards, birth certificates, etc), first aid supplies, cash, batteries, flashlight, sealed food and water.
- Stock up. If you decide not to evacuate, you want to make sure you are prepared to camp in your house. Think about all the things you’d need for a camping trip. Put those same types of items away for hurricane preparation! Bottled water, canned or preserved food, sternos, grill or generator, bug spray (no A/C means you’ll be sleeping with the windows open), flash lights, batteries, candles, etc.
- Know your emergency communication plan. Here at ServiceMaster By Glenn’s, we offer an Emergency Response Agreement. An E.R.A. is a non-binding agreement that allows ServiceMaster by Glenn’s to have the first opportunity to respond to your emergency needs. But more importantly, it provides a guaranteed response in the event of an emergency at your property 24/7 every day of the year, including holidays. You will never have to leave a voice mail. We are on-call around the clock for immediate response
Now that you have some basic disaster planning accomplished, let’s think about your home! Hurricane season runs May to November. NOW is the time to prepare your home for upcoming storms.
- Trim vegetation. In addition to just the winds produced by a hurricane, hurricanes can have tornadoes in them. This is why it is imperative you trim or removed damaged trees or limbs. The last thing you want is for that dead tree in your yard to fall on your home in the middle of the storm!
- Take a survey of the outside of your home. Are there any loose rain gutters or downspouts? Do you have loose roof tiles or shingles? Do you have any cracked or damaged windows? All these things need to be fixed ahead of hurricane season.
- Get a generator. Waiting for a hurricane warning is too late to get a generator. Residents will flood their local home improvement stores to purchase this useful tool.
- Designate your storm shelter. If the winds get really strong or if a tornado does hit you in the middle of a hurricane, make sure you have a FEMA safe room. View the guidelines to build a FEMA safe room.
- Make sure your car is in good shape. If you find yourself needing to evacuate from a hurricane, you don’t want to be dealing with a flat tire or engine problems. Getting your car serviced and inspected is a great way to ensure you have reliable transportation away from the storm.
- Get an emergency radio / TV. If the power goes out, your smartphones and tablets can only stay charged for so long! Make sure you have a good old fashioned emergency radio or TV to stay on top of weather conditions. Conversely, you can look into purchasing some solar powered device chargers as well!
You are in pretty good shape if you’ve completed both lists above. Now, it’s time to get educated about what the weathermen will be referencing during their 24 / 7 broadcasts.
What Do All the Hurricane Terms Mean?
Whether this is your first or 5th hurricane, sometimes the terms can be a bit confusing.
- Hurricane watch means hurricane-type conditions could present themselves in the next 48 hours.
- Hurricane warning means hurricane-type conditions could present themselves within 36 hours.
Although hurricanes can cause a lot of “camping out” and waiting for the storm (otherwise known as “hurricane parties”) there are some necessary things you should be doing when you go under hurricane warning or hurricane watch.
What To Do in a Hurricane Warning or Watch:
- Bring your lawn decorations / furniture inside. Lightweight objects can become projectiles in a storm. You don’t want your patio furniture flying through your window or destroying the screen on your pool!
- Cover windows/doors. If you do not have impact glass, make sure you are putting either hurricane shutters or plywood over your windows and glass doors in preparation for the storm. The best plywood to use is 5/8″ exterior grade or marine plywood.
- Get a full tank of gas. You’ll notice the locals will all raid the gas station in the event of a hurricane warning or watch. Be ahead of the crowd and make sure you have a full tank of gas within hours of the warning or watch being announced.
Need More Hurricane Preparedness Information?
View our YouTube videos below that detail how to best prepare for a hurricane:
Here at ServiceMaster By Glenn’s, we hoped you’ve found this article useful on all the things you need to consider to be prepared with and to handle a hurricane. When it comes time to clean up after the storm, make sure you have us programmed into your phone (24/7/365 hotline: 772-567-4435). We have many years experience handling disaster restoration for projects big and small.