Hurricane season officially begins June 1and runs through November 30 on the Atlantic coast. The sunny skies of summer can quickly change to a dark and ominous storm, so don’t be caught unprepared.
Develop a plan: Be sure to assess your home for potential hazards from wind, water, or other storm-related damage (such as trees that may fall, weak windows that could break, and areas that could flood). Decide on a safe room in the house during a storm. It should be central and have few or no windows. Pre-arrange exit routes from your home and a place nearby to meet up in case of unexpected home evacuation. Establish an out-of-area friend who can serve as a central phone contact if local phone access becomes limited. Post emergency numbers by the phone and explain them to children. Don’t forget to plan on who will help evacuate and look after pets in case of an emergency. Finally, check with your insurance agency to find out what is covered and how to best protect your property.
Assemble a supply kit: A fully stocked disaster supply kit can make all the difference. Each person should have access to a gallon of water per day and enough food to last 3 to 7 days. The kit should include non-perishable food items requiring little cooking or preparation, food for infants and pets, snack food, a manual can opener, simple cooking tools with fuel, disposable plates, napkins, and utensils.
Gather blankets, pillows, and seasonal clothing along with rain gear and good shoes. Don’t forget toys, games, and books to keep little ones occupied. Make sure your pet’s special items are ready as well.
Get a first aid kit and include necessary prescription medications. Assemble toiletry and hygiene items including moist sanitizing wipes.
Always have plenty of batteries and a variety of flashlights and radios. Keep an extra cell phone battery on hand. Cash and credit cards should be easily accessible, and important documents should be stored in a waterproof container.
Stay informed: Tune in to television weather coverage, radio broadcasts, and specially designated weather websites so you know when a storm is coming.
Find a place to go: You should make reservations early for your local hurricane evacuation center, and be sure to inquire if it accepts animals. Many hotels and motels also offer hurricane reservations. If you have friends or family out of hurricane range, coordinate with them early so your sudden arrival goes smoothly, and always evacuate early to avoid huge traffic jams.
If you have specific medical issues that are of concern during a hurricane or other emergency, talk to your doctor about any special preparations you should make. If you have medical questions or need a physician referral, Aventura Hospital and Medical Center can help. Visit us online or call Consult-A-Nurse® at 1-888-256-7692 any time of the day or night.