How To Prepare Your Family And Property For A Hurricane
Hurricane preparedness is essential. Mother Nature’s most destructive event against property is a hurricane. These behemoths are capable of destroying any building large or small, with the exception of broken windows and fallen trees.
Even if your home is not in an area susceptible to hurricanes it’s worth being prepared. After all, hurricanes are expensive: per the climate changes are making hurricanes more powerful and destructive than ever before.
These six tips from 911 Restoration of Miami will help you prepare for hurricane season. Many of these tips are also applicable to other disasters such as earthquakes or floods. This post can be shared with family and friends to help them keep up to date on upcoming emergency events.
Large corporations often have a Crisis Communication Plan. This helps to reduce panic and ensures safety during emergency situations. Even small businesses and families should create such plans to ensure that everyone is on the same page in case of disaster. Choose a place to meet in case of separation and create a list of reminders, such as:
- Turn off main power, propane tanks, and appliances
- Make sure you have a disaster supply kit, and replenish it as necessary
- Check that your vehicle has enough gas to run.
- Anything that you can pick up from the wind, such as signs, chairs, and bicycles, please bring it in.
- For updates on the storm’s progress, listen to TV or radio.
These things can be written down and communicated to others. This will improve peace of mind, morale, and help everyone remain prepared.
2. Make A Hurricane Preparedness Kit
FEMA , most local authorities and FEMA recommend that you have an emergency preparedness plan. The kit should contain basic items that your family or property would require in the event of a hurricane, or another disaster.
Remember that you might need to survive for several days on your own before help arrives. Consider how much water and food you would need to sustain yourself for such a short time. Take a look at the following list, but think about your family’s unique needs. You might add toys and coloring books to your list if your children are young. Seniors may have special medication needs. What should I include in a hurricane preparedness pack?
The following should be included in a basic emergency kit:
- Non-perishable food such as canned goods, dried pasta, etc.
- First aid kit
- Hygiene products for personal use
- Portable radio
- Local maps
- To turn off utilities, tools (such as a wrench or pliers)
- Gas for your generator
- Whistle (to signal that you need help)
- Can opener (for opening cans of canned goods)
- Pets need extra food and water
3. Safeguard Important Documents
Paper documents can be fragile and easily lost in an emergency. You should make sure that they are secured in a safe or deposit box, at least five feet from the ground. Documents could include:
- Certificate of birth
- Certificate of marriage
- Address proof
- Lease or deed to your home
- Insurance policies
- Record of bank account
- Documents tax
- Medication list
Review Your Insurance Policies
You should be aware of your insurance coverage for hurricanes. While most homeowner’s policies will cover structural damage from hurricanes or windstorms, some may exclude flooding. Flooding is a frequent side effect of hurricanes. You may need additional insurance, especially if your home is in an area that is susceptible to flooding. Another exclusion you may need is sewer backup.
Take a look at what your insurance company covers for hurricane damage. Make sure you have enough money to rebuild your home. You should also be aware of potential threats from the outside, such as telephone poles or large trees that could cause damage to your roof and walls. If your insurance doesn’t cover structural repairs, they could prove costly.
If you are staying in hotels or other accommodations, make sure that your policy covers extra living expenses. Make sure you understand your hurricane deductible.
It is worth taking the time to inspect and photograph every possession in your home. This will allow you to determine if your insurance policy covers the cost of repurchasing furniture and appliances. This will provide proof of loss and speed up the insurance claim process. It also allows you to deduct losses from federal income taxes.
5. Install Storm Shutters
Windows are the most vulnerable part of your home. Businesses often use plywood to secure their windows during hurricanes. Plywood is inexpensive, but it has its drawbacks.
- Wood will rot and become unusable over time.
- The shutters will need to be installed by you. This can take time and could require you to use a ladder.
We recommend that professionals like 911 Restoration of Miami install storm panels or shutters with impact resistance well in advance of any inclement weather. These panels should be made of metal, such as aluminum or steel. They are more durable than plywood. These can be easily removed after a storm passes and can be used again during calmer weather. A second layer of protection is available even if you have hurricane-rated windows. This will give you peace of mind in the event of a disaster.
6. Protect The Exterior
You should inspect the exterior of your property for potential hazards. You should secure fixtures like fences. Also, make sure that your shed, lawnmower and grill are securely secured (or stored indoors if you have the space).
Remember that 100 mph winds can be stronger than you think. While an outdoor bench might seem solid during windstorms, it can be easily tossed about like a plastic bag when a Category 4 or 5 hurricane hits.
Also, trim branches and trees within 10 feet of your home. Check your foundation for cracks and other signs of distress. These problems can be fixed now to prevent further destruction.
How To Protect Your Roof From Hurricanes
Your roof can be severely damaged by hurricanes. Even if there aren’t any large trees or power lines nearby, strong winds and heavy rains can cause roof damage and even lead to leaks. There are several ways to protect your roof from a hurricane:
- A home inspector or roof inspector should inspect your roof for any damage or weak spots.
- Replace or nail down any loose shingles.
- Clear out gutters to prevent blockages or leaks.
- Replace weak or rusty screws with newer ones
- Roof straps and construction adhesive can be used to strengthen rafters or weak spots.
- Hurricane clips can be installed to lower the chance of your roof being torn off the main residence.
Call 911 Restoration of Miami for your damage restoration needs when hurricane season strikes
You may feel overwhelmed and traumatized by the amount of work that must be done, hurricane damage or any other type of disaster. 911 Restoration of Miami’s professionals will provide you with a written plan and a consultative approach to help you get back to normal as quickly as possible. We can work with all insurance companies and utilize the most current technology and tools in the industry to restore your property to its original condition.
To speak with a member of our team and have your questions answered, call at (305)-280-0755. If you are experiencing residential water damage or commercial property damage due to hurricane season. Call one of our IICRC certified specialists today.