One can never be fully prepared for a natural disaster. But here are a few quick to-do’s to mitigate the impact of a natural catastrophe such as IRMA.
by Cecilia Langlois
Just remember, the basic rule in times of disaster is to KEEP YOURSELF AND YOUR FAMILY SAFE. As the oft-repeated line goes: “Things can be replaced, but not your loved ones.”
EVACUATE, if told to do so by your local government.
1. PACK A BAG for at least 3 days. Bag should include water, food, cash, first aid, flashlight & batteries, your medications, your important documents (insurance policies, mortgage) & I.Ds., cellphone chargers.
2. SAFEKEEP YOUR PRECIOUS ITEMS – put the ones that you cannot bring with you in the middle rooms (rooms without windows or rooms between rooms) or in the hallway closets; or put them on top of tables counters, and cabinets in case of flood.
3. TURN OFF all electricity in the house. Unplug all electric cords.
4. INFORM your relatives and/or friends where you’re heading.
5. KEEP YOUR CAR GAS TANK FULL
If not evacuating (not encouraged if in an evacuation zone)
1. PREPARE FOR POWER OUTAGE – flashlights (preferably hand-crank), batteries, candles, lighters/matchsticks
2. PREPARE FOR WATER SHORTAGE – fill up bathtubs, pitchers, and anything that can hold water; buy & freeze water bottles
3. STOCK UP ON FOOD – Buy food that lasts up to a week without refrigeration
4. STAY IN THE MIDDLE ROOMS especially if there are tornado alerts, or if the winds are threatening to break your windows
5. SAFEKEEP YOUR PRECIOUS ITEMS – put the ones that you cannot bring with you in the middle rooms (rooms without windows or rooms between rooms) or in the hallway closets; or put them on top of tables counters, and cabinets in case of flood.
6. SECURE COMMUNICATION – Inform your relatives and/or friends that you’re staying in your house. And keep them informed if there are changes to your plans. Get your county’s disaster hotline. Ask about your county’s emergency notification system. Fully charge your cellphones, then turn them off and use them only for emergency. Get a weather radio.
7. PREPARE FOR LAST MINUTE EVAC – Keep your gas tank full, have a bag all packed and ready to go.