Hey, Sandy here with Southern Readiness,
Another hurricane season is upon us, and we are starting with Miss Dorian.
I spent this morning reviewing my hurricane emergency kit and thought I would share my little check list.
*** Check batteries in lanterns and flashlights:
I pull them out, make sure there is no corrosion on them, then put them back in and make sure they work. I also make sure I have PLENTY of spare batteries.
*** Check emergency food:
I look at the dates, make sure nothing is expired and add to it if necessary. Make your grocery list and go to the store DAYS before the expected storm in in your area. Last minute shopping means everything is picked apart and you may not be able to find the supplies you need. And don't forget to pick up extra pet food!! I also have Chef 5 Minute Meals on hand. These are self-heating and are perfect in an emergency when the power is out or if on the road during an evacuation. They come as individual MRE type meals and in both 24 and 72 hour kits. A hot meal is a huge family morale booster.
*** Check water supply:
My Berkey has been working overtime the last couple days getting enough pure drinking water on hand. It will also purify non-saltwater from any source making it a lifesaver in a prolonged emergency. I also check the water I have stored to use for showers, etc. Make sure stored bottled is still useable and I check for mildew on the caps. If you store your water in a garage or other place that gets very hot, your water or food supply won't last as long. I store mine in the laundry room, out of the way, but is still air conditioned.
*** Check your necessary medications and first aid kits:
Make sure you have plenty of the medications you take on a daily basis. Your pharmacy could be closed for an extended period of time, even if there isn't much damage, but just a power outage. Is your first aid kit complete? Do you have enough bandages and items for severe bleeding? Is there anything expired? Remember, you ARE your own first responder in a crisis. Help may not be coming for hours or even days. If you haven’t taken at least a basic first aid course, do it. Can your family members take care of you?
*** Check fuel supply for cooking, generators and in your vehicle:
If you are using propane bottles, make sure the connectors and your stove is clean and the bottles are in good shape. I use my Kelly Kettle as well, so easy and quick to use and doesn't need a fuel supply, just sticks and twigs. Make sure you have fuel SAFELY stored for your generator if you are using one, or look into a solar generator, as I am. Solar power is plentiful and quiet. Look into solar stoves and solar ovens. You can cook anything you can cook on a stove and they now come in many sizes making them easily transported.
Make sure your vehicles have a full tank of gas... If you have to evacuate, fuel may be hard to come by, and you may also be sitting in LOOOONNNNGGG lines of traffic... (I am talking to you, Pinellas County!!!, Even without an evacuation.)
*** Check your homeowners/renter's insurance policy:
Rules change, coverage changes, so make sure you know EXACTLY what you are coverage will be if you file a claim beforehand. Talk to your agent. If your coverage isn’t what it needs to be, work with them. Remember, you may not be able to get insurance as a storm approaches as insurance companies have windows based on the time the storm is expected and areas that could be impacted where new polices are not accepted. Don’t get surprised. Call today.
*** Bring in plants, lawn furniture and PETS:
A famous comedian once said "It's not THAT the wind is blowing, it's WHAT the wind is blowing." Yard gnomes can become missiles in a tornado or in hurricane force winds. Now, that may be cool to see, a cute gnome flying through the air, until it comes through your window. Clean out the garage and make room for items that are normally outside. If you intend to board up windows, get those supplies early, because that sells out quickly.
*** Check your evacuation routes:
It’s important that if you have to leave that you know where to go before the evacuation decision is made. Have at least two escape routes mapped out in case your primary is blocked or too crowded to be effective.
*** And last but not least, START NOW!!! Start DAYS before the storm even gets close. If there is a slight chance it will affect your area, GET READY.
If it does hit your area, then GOOD WORK!!! If it doesn't GOOD WORK, you are ready for anything else that may come your way.
Please, as always be safe and Stay Southern Strong and Rocky Mountain Ready!!!