Living in Florida, we’ve had our share of hurricanes. In 2017, Irma was projected to hit the East Coast of South Florida, quickly gaining speed. At the last minute, it switched paths and made a beeline towards the West Coast. Devastating many people who were not prepared for this turn. This being said, we should always be prepared for the unexpected. Especially with hurricane Dorian heading towards us.

As most of us know, Hurricane Dorian is projected to hit Florida but the path still being unclear. Everyone should be prepared. And it’s in your best interest to prepare ahead of time. Rather than running around the last minute in the dangerous crowds and long lines. You can even start picking up things a few months before hurricane season to cut down on the expensive last minute costs. First things first, know your evacuation route.

Plan an evacuation route

Planning your route to evacuate well ahead of time is always a good idea. Depending on where you live, maybe a mobile home or on a coastline, if a hurricane is headed your way, have a plan. Some people plan to head to the nearest shelter, others get in their car and drive up north and some try to hop on a plane a few days ahead of time.

Whichever way you choose to evacuate is up to you. However, you will always get instructions from the governor if you need to evacuate your specific area.

2. Always keep supplies on hand

It’s pretty typical when a hurricane warning is issued, people start to panic and run to the store to buy emergency supplies. However, try to always keep these on hand or get to the store before the rush:

  • Batteries (AA, AAA & D)
  • Candles or lamps
  • Matches (stored in a dry place)
  • Emergency home repair material & tools such as plywood, hammer & wrenches
  • Drinking-Water ( at least a three-day supply)
  • First aid kit
  • Dry & canned goods
  • Portable NOAA radio
  • Flashlights
  • Portable battery pack
  • Gas cans

3. Review your insurance policies & take inventory of your personal property

It’s always a good idea to know what is covered through your insurance policies. Check with them that you have enough coverage for your personal property. After you review your insurance, it’s important to take inventory of your property. Furthermore, it’s also a good idea to take photographs of your belongings in case of damage.

4. Protecting your home

Hurricane-force winds can do a lot of damage to your property and also uplift just about anything that is left lying around your home. Before a storm, make sure you do the following:

  • Cut weak branches and trees that could fall on your house and keep shrubbery trimmed.
  • Install storm shutters to protect your windows from breakage. Alternately, fit plywood panels to your windows, which can be nailed to window frames when a storm approaches.
  • Make sure exterior doors are hurricane proof. Have at least three hinges and a deadbolt lock that is at least one-inch long.
  • Sliding glass doors should be made of tempered glass and, during a storm, covered with shutters or plywood. These types of doors are more vulnerable to wind damage than most other doors.
  • Replace old garage doors and tracks with a door that is approved for both wind pressure and impact protection. The wind coming into your home through an opening this large poses grave problems for the rest of your home—especially your roof.
  • Seal outside wall openings such as vents, outdoor electrical outlets, garden hose bibs and locations where cables or pipes go through the wall. Use a high-quality urethane-based caulk to prevent water penetration.
  • If you live in a mobile home make sure you know how to secure it against high winds. Be sure to also review your mobile home insurance policy.
  • If you have a boat on a trailer, know how to anchor the trailer to the ground or house. Again, make sure to review your boat insurance policy.

Preparing for a Natural Disaster

Preparing for a hurricane can be stressful. However, make sure things are done either ahead of time or when there is a possible threat. This will help avoid crazy gas lines and the stress that people bring to the stores for the last minute preparations.

It’s always better to be safe. However, accidents can happen and injury prevention is always a good idea. In the event of an emergency, call 911. For an orthopedic specialist after the storm call us at 888-409-8006.