Most media forget to tell people that you have to be prepared to take care of yourself and family without government help for at least three days after a major hurricane. I grew up in Florida so we are very accustomed to hurricanes every summer. First off the media likes to fuel hystaria! Most category 1 and 2 should only concern low lunging areas and people who live in manufactured homes. Unless you are hit by spinoff tornado, our regular storms are worse than these storms. At 3, 4, and 5 long term locals start paying attention to local weather stations. National new services are not able to give details and help to locals especially our smaller towns. A great resource is a place called crownweather.com oddly enough they hail from Maine. With a little preparation they are easy to deal with and you can reduce stress with hurricane party. I’ve prepared an emergency list that you can print for easy planning to keep your family safe. Three to five days is the minimum you should be able to survive on your own.
It will take agencies like FEMA, or Red Cross to get into the area to help provide things like ice, water, and MRE’s, or medical help. You may choose as we have after touring a medically needy shelter to take advantage of the electricity guarantee, or with adequate preparation we stayin home. Our home generator and ample supplies made taking care of our selves the better choice. My hubby is diabetic and cannot wait 3 hours for a bologna sandwich. We weathered Ivan at home quite comfortably. The shelter had several difficulties procuring supplies.
Remember these must be multiplied for all family members sheltering with you. Pets, children and the elderly have more specialized needs. For children make it a camping trip. Add fun camping supplies to keep children occupied. Camp songs and games keep little ones happy and on fun adventure until normalcy returns.
Poncho with hood for rain
Emergency survival sleeping bag
Swiss Army knife (with can opener)
FM radio w/Batteries
Pen and paper for notes
60 feet Nylon Rope
Pliers~ to turn off utilities
Duck tape to shelter in place
Dust mask (N95)
Leather palm working gloves
Rolls of toiletpaper paper in Ziploc bag
Hygiene kit-tooth brush paste, wet wipes & femine items
Mini hand sanitizer
Garbage bags and ties for sanitation
Complete First Aid kit with Prescription medication for all. You need emergency supply to last 1 week without refill.
Shovel – to dig sanitation holes
Several flashlights with extra batteries I also add several lanterns both battery and oil to illuminate lager areas. Candles, lighters and matches serve well in dinning room and living room to provide light for meals after dark or old fashion board games.
24 hour light stick
Food hard-working high in calories and don’t need to be cooked
Backpacks if needed to move or carry supplies
Solar charger for electronics
Generator with reserve fuel
Manual charger bank for cell phone
Car charger plugin for phones
Car converter to plug in laptops or other small appliances
1 gallon water per person per day
Clothing for 3 – 5 days per person both hot and cold
I. Important documents (I keep ours in 3 ring binder) contains birth certificates, marriage license, copies of driver licenses, and social security cards on all. Insurance documents both policy and deeds. Bank account information, Usernames and passwords, list of credit cards, and numbers. Account numbers for all utilities and services. Tax returns, and anything else I would find important if starting over again. Don’t go crazy but, I keep all in one binder so if fire or flood I can grab it and go. I try to update several times throughout the year. Irreplaceable family photo’s should have a book of their own…consider making scans stored on non destructible DVD Rom disks.
Florida in particular the gulf coast has 1 more essential hurricane party must have…
Plan early, be prepared and stay safe friends and enjoy your summer!