Hurricane season for the Atlantic seaboard runs from June 1st to November 30th. Are you and your loved ones prepared? It can be stressful when the weather is uncertain. Though most storms can be harmless, the weather can turn sour at any moment. But, despite this uncertainty there are key steps that can be taken to benefit your safety during severe weather:
- Monitor the weather: though this may seem arbitrary, being aware of what is going on with the weather is the first step to proper preparation. We recommend that you monitor the weather through your local news stations and weather apps. Be able to recognize the signs of severe weather approaching so that you can act quickly and effectively when a storm is coming.
- Make an emergency plan: the next step after recognizing that severe weather is heading your way is to create a plan. This plan should include supplies that need to be gathered, where important documents are located, as well as the directions to local severe weather shelters that can be easily accessed. This plan should also allocate for pets, children, and any other vulnerable family members that may need extra assistance. We recommend that this plan should be shared and reviewed with every family member at the beginning of hurricane season every year.
- Supplies: having the proper supplies will be key when it comes to being properly prepared. The last thing that you want is have yourself or a family member trying to find food or medical items in severe weather. Stocking up on water, non-perishable food, extra clothing, pet supplies, chargers, first aid kits, flashlights, and weather radios will help you and your loved ones have access to necessities if it is not safe to go out to the store due to flooding, power outages, or blocked roads. To prevent limited supplies for others we recommend collecting these items slowly over time. So that you have all you need before hurricane season begins.
- Listen to Safety Professionals: one of the easiest ways to increase your level of safety during a natural disaster is to follow the instructions of the safety and weather personnel that are monitoring the situation. If it is suggested to take shelter, seek higher ground, or evacuate, follow these instructions. This will help benefit the safety of not only you, but your loved ones as well as you put yourself in the safest situation possible during the storm.
- Review Your Coverage: in advance of a storm heading your way, carefully review your homeowners or renters’ insurance to make sure that you are fully covered in the event that the worst happens. Often people make improvements to their home and neglect to upgrade their insurance or underestimate the value of their possessions. You don’t want to find out that you are underinsured when trying to rebuild from a catastrophic storm.
- Prepare for Insurance Claims: preparation in advance of the storm can make all the difference in having your insurance claim handled fairly. Photograph your home, inside and out, prior to the storm landing so that the extent of any damage can be properly assessed. In taking the photographs, pay particular attention to items of value inside your home. Also, photograph important documents, including insurance policies, and store the images on your phone. Having access to these documents can expedite the commencement of your claim.
Severe weather can be unnerving. But, there are a lot of resources such as Ready.Gov or the American Red Cross there to help you learn how to become better prepared. Click Here to learn more about Ready.Gov. Click Here to learn more about the American Red Cross Hurricane Preparedness Page. To Explore more of our hurricane related posts Click Here.