A complete hurricane prep list can guarantee your survival during a natural disaster. A list as a guide will help you prepare in the right direction and make sure you don’t forget anything in the nerve-wracking pre-hurricane situation.
RELATED: The ONLY Hurricane Survival Guide You Need
The only hurricane prep list you need to survive
1. Be informed
- Familiarize yourself with the terminology to distinguish between hurricanes, tropical storms, and tropical depressions.
- Follow news reports and evacuation warnings.
- Get a weather warning radio so you’re always up to date.
2. Stay home safe
Although most of the time hurricanes will result in an evacuation, keep in mind that you must first keep your home safe.
- Use storm shutters to cover your windows.
- If there is wind, stay away from windows, even if they are boarded up.
- Stay indoors during the storm. Don’t go outside even when the storm is passing and it seems calm. Wind can come up at any time and therefore there is still danger lurking in the calm.
- Always stay in the direction of the wind. This is the side of the house that the wind won’t hit directly.
- Prepare an evacuation plan even if you don’t need one.
3. In the event of an evacuation
As a hurricane preparedness measure, consider letting your family and friends know where you are evacuating. That way, if you lose touch, they will worry less.
When preparing for an evacuation, consider keeping bug-out bags with water, food, warm clothing, and any other essentials you may need. Also, start packing all your essentials in your car when a hurricane forecast hits your area. If you take your time, make sure you don’t leave any necessary items behind.
- Getting a road map of your area is an excellent aid for GPS
- Please fill up the tank of your vehicle and do not let it drop below half
- Familiarize yourself with evacuation routes and leave early to avoid traffic and road closures
- Plan for pets by also packing the essentials
- Make plans to stay out of danger with friends and family
4. Mitigation measures
Whether or not you get evacuated, protective measures will ensure you still have a home to return to after the hurricane. In addition to securing plywood over windows, sandbags will help drive out water if you live in a low area.
Also, put all of your patio furniture around the house and lock your doors and windows for security so the wind doesn’t blow them up. Also, consider placing storm shutters over your glass doors and windows, including anchored RVs.
Prune shrubs and trees as loose plants and branches fly around in the wind, which can be dangerous.
- Be sure to turn off utilities such as electricity, water, and gas before evacuating
- Make sure you have backup batteries for carbon monoxide and smoke alarms in case there is a power outage
- Clotheslines and tarps come in handy to prevent further post-hurricane damage until repairs can be made
- Fill your sanitized bathtub with water for excess water in case you are hit by a hurricane
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5. Food and water
Another important item on the hurricane prep list is food and water. How much food and water do you need to prepare it? Well, you have more than you think to be sure. Keep in mind that power outages are likely to occur, so base your food choices accordingly.
Canned foods are easy to prepare and don’t need to be refrigerated, which makes them an ideal choice. Don’t forget to stock up on baby food, infant formula and other essential baby items too.
And if you have pets, prepare their supplies too.
- Fill your BBQ grill propane tank or ovens to cook without electricity
- Before and after the storm, fill your cooler with dry ice to keep your food cold. Alternatively, you can wrap your freezer in extra blankets to keep it colder for longer
- Storms in most cases lead to spilled sewage or flooded wells. It is therefore helpful to look out for warnings about boiling water. Countertop water filters will also serve this purpose
6. General deliveries
In addition to food and water, general supplies are also an essential addition to your hurricane prep list. This includes stocking up with:
- Toilet paper
- Other personal hygiene items before they run out of stores.
In addition to toiletries, stock up on prescription medication for at least two weeks. Pack them in a plastic bag with a snap lock and label them well. Keep in mind that credit cards and ATMs may not work during and after a storm. Hence, you need to have as much liquid cash as possible to weather the hurricane.
Other general supplies to stock up on include a battery-powered radio to keep you up to date with weather forecasts and alerts on the go. Also keep a few LED lanterns, flashlights, and a general first aid kit around your home and vehicle.
- Store batteries for your emergency radio and flashlights and prepare for several weeks without power
- Avoid using candles, especially if you have children around
7. Preparing for the power failure
Power outages are inevitable during hurricanes. Having a portable generator as a backup is a great idea. However, make sure that you or someone else knows how to power it to avoid accidents.
As with generators, be sure to use your gas grills outdoors, as both pose the risk of carbon monoxide. Finally, stay away from rundown power lines as they may still have electricity flowing through them. Instead, keep a copy of energy company contacts so you can report outages and broken power lines.
Top: Expect realistic power recovery times. It can take up to a week, so having enough food and water is awesome.
Keep a copy of all emergency contacts and phone numbers as a backup as your phone may fail or be lost during an evacuation. When you search your documents to prioritize the most important documents like wills, deeds, passports, and birth certificates, make sure you have the essentials with you.
- In addition to storing paper copies of valuable documents, scanning and saving on a USB stick is another practical alternative
- Recording a video of your property offers excellent insurance claims
- Your driver’s license will help you prove your place of residence in the event that you are evacuated
Whether you get evacuated or not, you will need some entertainment to keep yourself occupied if the power goes out. Board and card games are a pleasure for both children and adults.
Alternatively, you can opt for books to keep you busy when there is no internet or TV. However, you can use this time to get to know each other better. It helps reduce stress, especially in children.
After all, playing with pets is mutually beneficial as it relieves stress in the animals and you.
Check out this video by Bemyguestwithdenise Denise Cooper about DIY checklists for preparing for hurricanes and money-saving hacks:
Let’s go prepper. Most natural disasters are beyond our control. Hence, we can only adequately prepare for survival. No list is complete or perfect, but this hurricane prep list breaks the wide range of survival items you will need into smaller manageable categories. This way you can be sure that you are getting everything you need. Stay safe!
Any tips to add to this hurricane prep list? Let us know in the comments section below!
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