What are 5 survival tips for hurricanes?

Picture this: You’ve seen the news and a big one is brewing off the coast. A hurricane is on the horizon and I bet the first thing running through your mind is, “How am I going to stay safe through this?” Fear not, as a first crucial step to surviving this upheaval of nature is preparing an emergency kit that’ll make Bear Grylls proud. Let’s dive into what you’re going to need in your survival arsenal, tailored for hurricane disasters.

First things first, water is life, especially when potable water sources might get compromised during the storm. You’ll want to stockpile at least one gallon per person, per day, and plan for at least a 3-day supply. Being hydrated is non-negotiable when you’re trying to stay at the top of your game amidst Mother Nature’s fury.

Non-perishable food items are your next best friends. Crack open that pantry and pack away canned goods, energy bars, peanut butter, dried fruits – basically anything that doesn’t demand the luxury of refrigeration or a gourmet kitchen to prepare. Remember, the key here is ‘non-perishable’. A can opener is going to be worth its weight in gold, so make sure you have a manual one at the ready.

Let there be light – and lots of it! Flashlights, extra batteries, and portable lanterns are about to become indispensable as power outages play peekaboo. A rechargeable hand-crank flashlight might just be that beacon of hope (quite literally) if the batteries run out and you’re left in the dark. Solar-powered chargers can keep your phones juiced up but remember, avoid unnecessary use to conserve battery life.

Now, in the incredibly likely event of medical scrapes or worse, a first aid kit comes in hot. Stock it with bandages, antiseptics, any prescribed medications, and over-the-counter meds that might come in handy. Hurricanes apparently don’t care if you’ve got a headache, so it’s better to be prepared for the trivial stuff as well as the heavy hitters.

A whistle isn’t just for getting attention in a crowded room, it’s a lifesaver when you need to signal for help without tiring out your voice. Throw in some local maps as well – your phone’s GPS is a modern marvel, but not when it’s out of charge or there’s no signal. Old school navigation skills are a vintage skill set you’ll be grateful for under these circumstances.

It’s not just about what’s inside your body that matters, protection against the elements is a must, too. Have a stash of moist towelettes, garbage bags, and plastic ties for personal sanitation, plus, a good supply of masks in case you find yourself in a crowded emergency shelter. Hurricanes have no regard for personal space or modern health concerns.

Don’t forget to pack some cash or traveler’s checks; ATMs and card machines might be kaput in the aftermath of the hurricane. And, last but not least, throw in some family-specific extras like pet supplies, infant essentials, or anything particular to the needs of your loved ones.

Remember, this emergency kit isn’t just a grab bag; it’s peace of mind, squished into a portable container, ready to go when things get blustery. You may not be able to control the wind, but you sure can be prepared to weather it. So, get packing, and take this bull by the horns – or, in this case, the hurricane by the eye!

Reinforcing your home

Now, with your emergency kit at the ready, let’s talk about transforming your home into a fortress. In the face of high winds and flying debris, your abode must be akin to a superhero – strong, impenetrable, and unyielding. So, how do you go about turning your living space into such a bastion? It’s about reinforcing, baby, reinforcing!

Board up those windows because, let’s face it, shards of glass aren’t the kind of confetti anyone enjoys at a hurricane party. Plywood is the go-to material here, and it’s not just a matter of slapping it up. You’ll want to get those boards cut and ready way before those storm clouds roll in, aim for at least ⅝-inch thickness for that sturdy barrier against nature’s projectiles. Secure it properly; no flapping in the wind allowed here!

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Consider hurricane shutters for a more permanent solution. They look snazzy and function as a strong line of defense. Now, doors can turn traitor with a strong enough gale, so reinforce them, especially garage doors. If they give, the wind gets a free pass to tear your house apart from the inside out – not on our watch!

Let’s not forget about the roof – your home’s helmet. Keep it tight and right by checking for, and repairing, any loose or missing shingles. High winds love nothing more than catching a loose flap and getting to work. And while you’re up there, clean out those gutters and downspouts; water damage is the silent assassin in a hurricane’s arsenal.

Outdoor furniture might as well be labeled as potential missiles during a hurricane. Secure it or store it. The same goes for any yard debris or loose items that can take flight – because believe me, they will if given the chance. Trimming trees and shrubs not only makes your garden look spiffy but also reduces the risk of branches becoming wind-borne hazards.

Here comes a hot tip – invest in a generator. Power outages are as common as puddles in a storm, and having your own juice can make all the difference. But remember, this bad boy needs to be outside, far from windows and doors – carbon monoxide is a no-go.

And let’s chat about flooding. If you’re in a flood zone, sandbags are your new best friend. They’re like the bouncers at the door, keeping the unwanted water guest out of your party. Elevate the essential appliances – your fridge, washer, and even your furnace. They’re not just large, expensive paperweights; they need to keep humming to keep your life normal when the waters rise.

Communication lines can go down in a flash, right when you need them most. Corded phones might seem like relics from a bygone era, but they can come in handy when cell towers are on strike. Have one at the ready, and get familiar with its dial tone – it might just be the lifeline you need.

Finally, let’s lock this down with insurance. Review your policies because having adequate coverage is like having an umbrella that’s not just for show. Take photos or videos of your home pre-storm. Documentation is like gold when facing the aftermath and proving what damages were hurricane-related versus pre-existing wear and tear.

By now, you can see the fortress idea is taking shape. Sure, it’s not glamorous work, but when those winds howl, and that rain pounds, you’ll feel like a genius. So strap on your utility belt; this is every homeowner’s ultimate DIY project. Reinforce, secure, and prepare – then, cross your fingers and hope Mother Nature is feeling merciful.

Creating a family communication plan

Alright, let’s switch gears and tackle a crucial part of hurricane survival – how to ensure you stay connected with your loved ones when every second counts. A good communication plan is like having a map in a maze; it guides you through the chaos with less panic and more purpose.

Firstly, get your contact list in order. Ensure everyone in your household has a copy of emergency numbers including family members, close friends, doctors, local emergency services, and your insurance agent. Old school can be cool, so go ahead and print these out – technology might tap out when you need it most!

Create a family group chat on whatever messaging apps you use regularly. This will be your go-to for quick updates and check-ins. Assign an out-of-town contact too – sometimes local lines get jammed but it’s easier to reach someone further away, making them an ideal relay point for family members’ status.

We need to have ‘the talk’. Not that one, but the one about what to do if you get separated. Decide on a safe, familiar place as a meeting point, just in case. And practice your plan; under stress, humans tend to default to what’s familiar, so make your communication and rendezvous plans second nature.

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For families with kids, bring them into the loop. Discuss the importance of staying calm and staying put if they become separated from you during the storm. Teach them how to dial 911, memorize important phone numbers, and use family safety apps where they can check-in and alert you with their location.

Don’t underestimate the power of non-digital communication. Equip each family member with a personal whistle and a small flashlight. Sometimes, a whistle sound or a light signal is all you need to find each other among debris and darkness.

If a storm is imminent, set communication check-in times. Perhaps every four hours or after specific events, like the storm passing. This maintains a flow of information without clogging lines unnecessarily. And do remember to keep calls brief to prevent jamming phone networks – keep it short and sweet.

Here’s a hot tip: Text messages may get through even when phone calls won’t. So when voice lines are congested, switch to sms or other online messaging services that use less bandwidth. Oh, and always, always keep your phone charged when you get wind of an incoming storm (pun intended). If power is out, turn your phone on periodically to conserve battery life for when you really need it.

For those with accessibility needs or who do not speak the local language, include tools in your plan that will help them communicate effectively. This could be anything from a battery-operated hearing aid to printed phrase cards in the local language.

Lastly, don’t forget to account for your furry friends. Have a plan for your pets including how to communicate with veterinarians and shelters, and ensure they have ID tags with up-to-date contact information.

So folks, while a hurricane rages outside, your stellar communication plan can be the calm within the storm – a way to ensure everyone you care about is accounted for and on the same page. Take the time to craft and practice your plan, and it’ll be a little piece of order in the unpredictable tempest that is a hurricane.

Staying informed about the storm

Now, you’ve got your emergency kit prepped, your home is reinforced like a fortress, and your family communication plan is tighter than Fort Knox. But it’s not time to kick back yet. Staying informed is your next line of defense, and darlings, in the information age, ignorance isn’t bliss—it’s a blunder you can’t afford.

You need to become a mini meteorologist, following updates about the storm like you track your pizza delivery—eagerly and often. That means tuning into the local news on TV and radio, and heck, break out that old crank radio if the power’s down. The National Weather Service broadcasts weather updates that could be lifesavers.

Don’t just rely on one source, diversify your info intake. Follow trustworthy social media accounts, especially those dedicated to weather and emergency management. They often share real-time information and visual cues that could provide insight into the hurricane’s path, strength, and the timing of the most dangerous conditions. Be sure, though, to avoid getting sucked into the vortex of rumors and sensational posts—stick to the facts, Jack.

Make use of tech tools, but don’t let them lull you into a false sense of security. There are apps for everything, and hurricanes are no exception. Download a reliable weather app to get alerts and warnings. Always ensure the notifications are on and loud enough to wake Sleeping Beauty because, in this case, a buzz or a beep could mean it’s time to batten down the hatches or skedaddle.

Remember our friend, the whistle? Here’s where it could come in handy. Stay tuned to official advisories on whether it’s safe to step outside or if it’s wiser to whistle a tune to keep your spirits up indoors. The calm eye of the storm can be deceiving and going outside could put you straight into the path of the oncoming danger zone.

Here comes the crown jewel advice: never underestimate the power of a good book or a deck of cards. Sometimes, staying informed means waiting for updates, and during these times, keeping your brain distracted can prevent unnecessary anxiety. Engage with simple pastimes that keep the mood light and the mind sharp.

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Ultimately, keeping one ear to the ground and one eye on the skies (metaphorically, of course, unless you’re peeking through hurricane shutters) is going to keep you one step ahead in the hurricane hustle. Be proactive, stay informed, and employ every tool at your disposal to ensure you and your loved ones remain safe and sound during the stormy siege.

Evacuating safely

Let’s shift gears to that moment when the rubber hits the road, or more appropriately, when your feet hit the pavement and it’s time to bail. I’m talking about evacuating safely. When the order comes down from the powers that be, it’s go time, and being ready to roll can make all the difference between chaos and an orderly retreat.

Folks, know your routes. It’s like being a bank robber with a getaway plan, except it’s totally legal and much, much safer. Check your local government’s evacuation routes ahead of time and have multiple options just in case one is blocked off or traffic-clogged. Knowledge of the terrain can turn a panic dash into a brisk, stress-free saunter (metaphorically speaking).

When that evacuation call rings out, it’s not the time to fill up old photo albums with pictures of your vacation to Tijuana. Grab that emergency kit we talked about earlier – yes, the one you painstakingly put together with all the essentials. It’s your suitcase to survival.

Packing the car is an art form in these scenarios. Think Tetris, but with more dire consequences if you don’t fit everything in. Keep emergency supplies accessible, ensure your gas tank is full, and, like Dad always said, “Make sure the car’s in good running condition!” You don’t want a breakdown in the middle of a hurricane exodus.

Say you’re in the queue to leave Dodge and it’s moving slower than molasses in January. You’re gonna wish you brought snacks, water, and some entertainment. And this isn’t just for you—it’s for the kids, the elderly, and even your fur babies who might be hitching a ride. A calm car is a corner of tranquility in the eye of the storm.

Now, heed this well: only evacuate if you’re told to do so. Don’t be the maverick who decides to beat the rush. Evacuation orders are given for specific areas at specific times for good reason. Jump the gun, and you might just end up in more danger. Listen to local authorities – your safety is their priority.

Communication is key, so keep those phones charged and have chargers ready in the car—remember the solar-powered and crank options. And never forget the simple, yet effective traditional car charger. In emergencies, a working phone can be as crucial as a life vest on a sinking ship.

Most importantly, stay calm. I know, I know, easier said than done. But panic is more contagious than the common cold in close quarters. Keep a level head, follow your plan, and drive with caution. Rushing helter-skelter could lead to accidents, which will do nobody any favors during an evacuation.

Let’s address the elephant in the room – traffic. It’s the bane of commuters and evacuees alike. Expect it to be heavy and slow-moving, plan your restroom breaks and stretch your legs when you can. Just because it’s an evacuation doesn’t mean you can’t be strategic about your comfort levels.

Alright, you’ve reached your safe destination. Huzzah! But remember, the journey isn’t over once you arrive. Check in with that family communication network you set up. Let them know you’re safe, and stay tuned to local news and weather updates for the all-clear to return home or further instructions if the storm takes a turn for the worse.

Evacuation isn’t a sprint; it’s a marathon with a dash of the Amazing Race. It demands preparation, calmness, and a good dose of common sense. So when the going gets tough and the tough need to get going, strap in, follow the plan, and drive your way to safety. The road may be long, but it leads to the secure embrace of ‘after the storm has passed’.

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