Follow these steps in your home prior to the storm:
WHEN A STORM THREATENS
- Seal key documents — including passports, wills, contracts, insurance papers, car titles, deeds, leases and tax information — in zip plastic bags and get into a protected, dry place, such as a safe-deposit box or home safe.
- Monitor the news
- Set the refrigerator to its coldest setting in anticipation of the power failing.
- Fill the bathtub. It may be your main supply of water.
- Stock heavy-duty garbage bags for post-storm home and yard cleanup.
- Check flashlight and radio batteries and have extras on hand.
- Charge rechargeable cellphones, drills, power screwdrivers, flashlights, lanterns and batteries.
- Make sure you have enough toilet paper to last until you can safely get to the store again.
- If you live in mobile home, you should evacuate if a hurricane of any strength is heading your way.
- If you live in a hurricane evacuation zone, you must evacuate if an order is given. Please see evacuation zone maps (if available) to find out which areas must evacuate for Category 1 or 2 hurricanes and which must leave for Category 3 or higher storms.
- Your first choice should be to stay with a friend or family member who is living close by but is not in a flood-vulnerable area.
- If you plan to leave, start packing. Don't wait until the storm is almost here to get on the road.
WHEN A STORM IS APPROACHING
- Don't be misled by landfall predictions. Strong winds could arrive hours before official landfall and be many miles away from the eye.
- Move furniture away from windows or cover with plastic.
- Move as many valuables as possible off the floor to limit flooding damage.
- If possible, secure small, fragile and/or valuable items that could be thrown around if winds enter your home.