- Store enough drinking water to last for at least two weeks in case local water sources are unavailable.
- Check shutters on windows or purchase boards to fit windows.
- Find a place to secure outdoor objects such as lawn furniture, barbecue grills, trash cans and awnings.
- Place valuable papers and photographs in a water proof container and store them in a safe, dry spot such as a safety deposit box or safe.
- If you own a boat, moor it securely or move it to a safe area.
- Plan in advance where you will board your pets.
- Have a Disaster Supplies Kit
- Have at least one gallon of drinking water per family member for at least three days.
- Flashlight, battery-operated radio and a two week supply of batteries
- Extra cash: banking facilities may be out of service.
- Canned goods, dry food, and a manual can opener.
- First aid supplies, extra prescription medicines, eye glasses and hearing aid supplies if needed.
- Sanitary supplies.
- Supplies for people in your family with special needs such as infants, the elderly or people with physical limitations.
- Make copies of your valuable papers in case the originals are lost and store them in a waterproof container.
If Local Officials Advise You to Evacuate
Please follow directions of local officials. Remember, evacuation routes can be closed by high winds and water many hours before a hurricane or tropical storm makes landfall. Additionally rainfall and local drainage conditions can flood evacuation routes quickly. Listen to your local radio station for updated information.
As you evacuate:
Know where you are going and leave early.
Make sure you have a full fuel tank in your vehicle.
Turn off gas, water, and electricity in your home.
Lock doors and windows, leave a note on the door indicating your destination, and identifying an out-of-area point of contact.
Take your disaster supply kit.
Keep important papers, including insurance forms, drivers licenses, property inventory, and medical information, with you at all times.
Remember, pets are not generally allowed in shelters. If you cannot make arrangements for them in a kennel, provide a comfortable area in your home with plenty of food and clean water.
After A Severe Tropical Storm or Hurricane
Stay out of disaster areas which could be dangerous and where your presence will interfere with essential rescue and recovery work. Do not drive unless you must. Roads should be left clear for emergency vehicles and debris removal equipment. Remember, debris-filled streets are dangerous.
Along the coast, soil may erode beneath pavement or bridge supports, which could collapse under the weight of a car. Be wary of inland flooding. Citizens returning home should expect the worst and take precautions to assure their safety.
Precautions to take when returning home
Do not use the telephone except for major emergencies.
Beware of loose or dangling power lines. Many lives are lost through electrocution.
Walk or drive cautiously. Watch out for snakes.
Do not use water until you receive word that it is safe. Eat only foods you are absolutely sure are safe. If power has been out, food that was refrigerated or frozen may not be safe to eat.
Don't light candles. Do not attempt to turn on utilities.
Be wary of dangerous or frightened animals.
Use care handling power tools, gas lanterns, generators and matches.
Call your insurance company to file a claim if your home is damaged, ask your insurance company for financial help.
Listen to local radio stations for official disaster relief information and instructions.
Most homeowner's insurance policies do NOT offer protection against flood losses. For information about flood insurance, call your local insurance agent, or call the National Flood Insurance Program at (800) 638-6620.