Hurricane Season: Preparing Yourself, Your Home, and Your Family

huricaneThe most important thing you and your family can do in preparation for a hurricane is to be able to survive on your own after the storm. This means having enough food, water, and other supplies to last at least three days. You may want to consider storing enough supplies to last up to two weeks. Local officials and relief workers will be on the scene after a disaster, but they can’t reach everyone immediately. Basic services such as electricity, gas, water, sewage treatment, and telephones may be cut off for days or weeks. You should store your kit in a designated place at home and have it ready in case you need to leave your home quickly.

Basic Disaster Supplies Kit:

  • (Keep items in airtight plastic bags and put your entire disaster supplies kit in one or two easy to carry containers)
  • Water: three day supply: one gallon per person, per day (see below for further details)
  • Food: three day supply: non-perishable (see below for further details)
  • Portable, battery-powered radio or television and extra batteries
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • First aid kit and manual
  • Sanitation and hygiene items (moist towelettes and toilet paper)
  • Matches in a waterproof container
  • Extra seasonal clothing
  • Mosquito spray
  • Kitchen accessories and cooking utensils, including a can opener
  • Photocopies of credit cards and other identification cards
  • Photocopies of important papers and phone numbers
  • Cash
  • Prescriptions
  • Other medical needs items: eye glasses, contacts, hearing aid batteries
  • Items for infants: formula, diapers, bottles, pacifiers
  • Items for pets: collars, leashes, copies of records, pet carrier, food, medications

It’s important to maintain your disaster supplies kit on a regular basis so that it is safe to use when needed. Change stored food and water supplies every six months. Canned foods should be kept in a dry place and boxed food should be stored in tightly closed plastic or metal containers to extend their shelf life. Replace food with fresh supplies when they go bad.