How to Prepare Yourself for Hurricane Season

This year’s hurricane season has kicked off a bit earlier than usual and is affecting an increasingly wide swath of the country. For homeowners, this means preparation is critical during the peak storm months of August through October.

The experts at Scepter, developers of containers for hazardous materials, explain that there are five “must-have” items every household should have in the event of a hurricane, or any severe weather event. Being prepared with these supplies can make or break your recovery effort post-hurricane.

  1. Water. Make sure you have enough clean water for drinking and sanitation: one gallon per person for at least three days is the recommended amount. Consider large, BPA-free containers that can be filled prior to a storm. If you have pets, be sure to take their water needs into consideration as well.
  2. Food. A three-day supply of non-perishable food should be available for every member of the family, and for pets. Remember that canned fruits, pastas, stews and other items may require a manual can opener, so make sure your household has one. Health bars, peanut butter and jelly, trail mix, dried fruits, pudding cups and other items that require no refrigeration or heating are the best items to stock the cupboard.
  3. Fuel. Gasoline, kerosene and/or diesel fuels are needed to operate power generators, chainsaws and emergency tools. Look for containers in varying sizes depending upon the needs of your household. Be sure to study up on manufacturer’s instructions in advance so that you know how to properly fill and transport fuel containers.
  4. Batteries. People living in a hurricane-prone area know that having a good stock of batteries is essential. With potential power outages, batteries become critical for operating flashlights and weather radios, which should be part of a disaster survival kit. They can also help with battery-operated lanterns and fans. A good supply of both LED and alkaline batteries should be on hand to operate items for at least three days.
  5. First Aid Kit and Medicines. In the aftermath of severe weather, homeowners may need bandages, antiseptic creams, rubbing alcohol and even sunscreen. It's also a good idea to have a stock of often-used over-the-counter medicines along with prescription medicines. Special items should also be in the kit, including spare glasses or contacts, hearing aid batteries, syringes and related medical supplies. The American Red Cross offers a comprehensive checklist of what should be in an emergency first aid kit.

In addition to these five items, Scepter recommends being prepared with additional essentials, such as fully charged cellphones, cash, tarps, duct tape and heavy garbage bags. The U.S. government has a dedicated site for building a disaster kit that families should review annually.

Most importantly, stock up on your emergency supplies well before a storm hits or is even predicted. This will provide important peace of mind for you and your family.

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2020. All rights reserved.

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