Last updated on August 22, 2019 at 03:22 pm
Folks at Plymouth Rock have learned so many valuable lessons from living through hurricanes and severe storms over the years (particularly our colleagues in New Jersey who dealt with Superstorm Sandy). We wanted to share some of the hurricane preparedness tips we’ve found helpful based on our experience.
While it’s not usually top of mind for most people, the best time to prepare for a hurricane is when there isn’t one in the forecast. Just a reminder that hurricane season lasts way longer than you might think (June 1 through November 30!) and that peak season is typically August through October. Here are 11 hurricane-tested tips to help you prepare for the next storm.
- Stock up on batteries and flashlights now. When Sandy was approaching, batteries were scarce. Buy them now and put them in a closet so you won’t be tempted to use them today.
- Stash that cash. Power outages mean credit and debit cards probably won’t work. If you know a storm is coming, make sure you have cash on hand.
- Gas up. Fill up your vehicles before everyone makes a mad dash to gas stations. Also, fill up spare containers if you have a generator or other necessary gas-powered items.
- Have an exit strategy. Have hurricane backpacks or supplies on hand. Make sure you’re protecting your important documents, along with gathering non-perishable food and water. It’s not a bad idea to also include a flashlight, basic first-aid supplies. If you gave pets, make sure to plan ahead for their safety, too.
- Gather your gear. Make sure to check on the status of all your items (like lanterns, batteries, battery-powered radio, solar cellphone charger, etc.). You don’t want to be fumbling in the dark looking for those spare batteries. All this stuff is best kept in one place, whether it’s an old shoe box, storage container or backpack.
- Know before you go. Familiarize yourself in advance with evacuation routes and storm surge areas near you.
- Stock up on food. Power outages after Sandy lasted a really long time in some places. If your home or apartment kitchen appliances rely on electricity, you’ll need to have food available that doesn’t need to be prepared or cooked.
- Power up. Make sure all your devices are fully charged. It’s also not a bad idea to charge spare batteries if you have the rechargeable kind.
- Have a family plan. Make a plan before the storm hits. Include phone numbers, a phone tree if you have a large family or even a private Facebook group so you can stay in contact.
- There’s no time like the present. The worst time to prepare for a hurricane is during one. Take the time today to make sure you and your loved ones are as ready as you can be.
- Store your insurance information. Make sure you have the name and contact information for your home insurance and auto insurance company (either on paper or in your phone). Taking pictures of your policy declarations pages and storing them on your phone will help ensure you’ll have your policy numbers accessible.
Hurricanes are scary business. While we can’t control them, we can definitely control how we react to them. Being prepared is your best defense.