Hurricane Season is Here. Be Prepared.

Hurricane season is upon us. Being prepared can help you, your family or your business minimize the impact of a storm. The best time to start is before the threat is imminent. Here’s what you need to know.

  1. Stay Informed
  2. Prepare Your Home 
    • Remove damaged trees and limbs.
    • Secure loose rain gutters, downspouts, windows and doors, including the garage doors.
    • Take photos or video of the interior and exterior of your home to document the pre-storm condition of your home.
  3. Make Sure You’re Covered
    • Review your current home and business insurance policies to ensure that you have adequate windstorm coverage as well as flood insurance.
    • Most standard homeowners insurance policies do NOT cover property damage caused by a flood.   With all of the flooding throughout the U.S. in recent years, it is a good idea to carry flood insurance.
    • If your home or property is damaged and you need to make an insurance claim, make sure you educate yourself on the process and your rights under your insurance policies.
  1. Plan the Basics
    • Know your evacuation route.
    • Fill up your car with gas.
    • Purchase extra gas if you have a generator.
    • Make a disaster supply kit including a flashlight, batteries, cash, first aid supplies, medications, a battery operated or hand-crank radio.
    • Gather critical documents like identification, health insurance cards, car insurance cards, passports, wills, insurance policies, and any important contact information.
    • Stock up on supplies like water, non-perishable food, pet food, and medications.  You never know how long you could be without power or access to a store.  Be sure to get enough essentials to last you and your family several days.
    • Charge your portable electronic devices, including phones, laptop computers, and digital cameras.
  1. What to Do When a Hurricane/Storm is Close
    • Heed all evacuation warnings and instructions from authorities.
    • Close storm shutters.
    • Check all surge protectors or unplug sensitive electronics.
    • Turn your refrigerator or freezer to the coldest setting so food will last longer if there’s a power outage.
    • Stay alert! Check TV, radio, or weather.com for the latest updates.
  1. What To Do During a Hurricane/Storm
    • Remain inside at all times, even if the storm seems calm. Storm conditions can change or worsen quickly.
    • Shut all interior doors and stay away from windows and glass doors.
    • Seek shelter in an interior hallway, bathroom, or closet on the lowest level of your house or under something sturdy, like a well-constructed table.
  1. What To Do After a Hurricane/Storm
    • Listen to local officials for updates and instructions.
    • Check in with family and friends by texting or using
      social media, like Facebook’s new disaster safety, check in site
    • Stay away from debris and downed power lines.
    • Avoid walking or driving through flood waters. If you must, grab some tall rain boots or waders. Flood waters are often contaminated.
    • Photograph all damage to your property to document any insurance claim.
    • File a claim with your insurance company for damages caused by the storm.
  1. Know Your Resources