Follow these hurricane preparation tips so you know what to do to prepare for a storm – and which items to keep in your emergency preparedness kit in case of a natural disaster or other emergency.
Hurricane Prep Tips
When you start hearing about tropical storms or other severe weather that might be headed your way, it’s time to make sure that you and your family are ready for anything. You probably already know the struggle to find food and water the week before a hurricane makes landfall, so it pays to prepare ahead of time and avoid extra stress.
The best way to handle hurricane warnings is to be prepared. I’ve experienced several hurricanes and severe storms and have some tips that my family and I follow every time. Preparing alleviates stress, and unfortunately has really come in handy during several weather events that left us without power or heat for days (and stuck at home due to downed trees across both sides of the road.)
This HALO charger is a heavy lifter when it comes to powering things up… including laptops or even jumpstarting your car:
Build a Hurricane and Emergency Preparedness Kit
Whether you are going to stay and ride it out or not, you should keep some essentials on hand just in case you lose power. Below, I will share all of the items my family keeps in our emergency preparedness kit. These are things that will help us if we lose electricity, access to heat or air conditioning, or need first aid.
Remember, emergency and food supplies sell out fast before a hurricane, so keep this kit stocked well before hurricane season even begins!
1. First Aid Kit // 2. Rechargeable Portable Fan // 3. Hand Crank Radio with LED Flashlight // 4. LED Camping & Hurricane Lantern // 5. D Cell 1.5 Volt Battery – Pack of 12 // 6. LifeStraw Personal Water Filter // 7. Portable Inverter Generator // 8. Portable Phone Charger // 9. Water Filter with 2 Black Berkey Filters and 2 PF2 Fluoride Filters // 10. Thermal Blankets // 11. Large Black Garbage Bags // 12. Portable Phone Laptop Charger Car Jump Starter with AC Outlet and Car Charger // 13. Laptops Backpack with USB Charging Port
Pack a Go-Bag
When the weather starts to get really bad, you’ll be glad to have already packed a ‘go bag’ just in case you need to leave quickly. A go-bag is basically a backpack with everything you will need to survive when you leave the house, just in case it floods or is damaged to the point you can’t live in it after the storm passes.
Your go-bag should include at least the following items:
- Vital Documents (in waterproof bag)
- Personal Hygiene Supplies (diapers and wipes if you have little ones)
- Cash and Credit Cards
- Moist Towelettes and items for sanitation (hand sanitizer and Lysol Wipes)
- Life Straws for water supply
- Flashlights and/or lanterns with batteries
- Waterproof ponchos if you aren’t wearing a rain jacket
- Thermal blankets in case you need to stay warm
Keep it where it’s easy to grab and go if you have to leave quickly, and make sure all family members know where to find it.
Make Plans to Evacuate or Shelter Safely
Make a plan for both, whether you evacuate or shelter in place. Where will you evacuate to if you need to leave? How will you shelter in place safely?
If you are going to shelter in place, prepare to lose power. Here’s a few important ways to prepare for power loss:
- Make sure you have enough clean water, ready to eat food, and sanitation/hygiene supplies to keep you healthy for at least a week.
- Have enough flashlights and lanterns for each person, PLUS batteries to power them. Size C and D batteries are hard to find in the days leading up to a hurricane, so stock up when you can. If that fails, I can usually find them on Amazon with two day shipping in a pinch.
- Make sure you have gas in your car (and I HIGHLY recommend doing this days before the hurricane arrives unless you want to sit in crazy long lines and deal with shortages.)
Prepare Your House before the Storm
You should secure your outdoor items – tie down or move your grill and outdoor furniture.
If you live where the hurricane is likely to make landfall, follow local guidelines which may include board up your house and adding sandbags.
You may also want to wash everything before the storm comes through while you have hot water. This includes washing all your clothes and dishes. Trust me, I’ve lost power for almost a week and the dirty, stinky laundry was awful! It took at least a month for me to catch up on laundry because there was so much of it.
Finally, inflate beds in the basement or safe space ahead of time so you can do it while you still have power (and don’t have to do it in the dark.)
What to Pack In Your Emergency Preparedness Kit
Sheltering in place and weathering the storm can be frightening. I suggest having a well-stocked emergency preparedness kit in your house well before any storm makes landfall. And having snacks drinks on hand never hurts, and is especially appreciated when sheltering in place for awhile. This reduces stress and eases discomfort too, especially during what can be a scary time.
Here is what I suggest keeping in your kit. I’ll split it up by category, so it’s easier to organize.
- First Aid Kit
- LED Lantern
- Head Lamps
- Portable Generator
- Thermal Blanket
- Water Filter
- Clip-On Rechargable Fan if you live in a warm climate and rely on A/C
- Radio/LED Flashlight/Phone Charger Combo
- Hefty Trashbags
- Slim Portable Phone Charger
- Laptop Charger/Car Jump Starter
- D Batteries
- Personal Water Filter
- Hand Sanitizer
- Laptop Backpack – pack it in a plastic bin
- Water Bottles
- Gallon Storage Bags
- Fill Tub
- Ice in Fridge
- Freeze Bags of Ice
- Cold Brew Coffee
- Canned Foods that Don’t Need to Be Heated or Can Be Heated by Gas Stove
- Pack Freezer with Ice and Bags Filled with Water
- Wine (let’s be honest!)
- Puppy Pads (especially if you have a discerning dog that doesn’t like to go out in the rain)
Above all, remember to pack all of your emergency supplies in a portable waterproof bin and put the most important supplies in a backpack in case you need to leave quickly.
I truly hope you NEVER need any of these items, but being prepared for emergencies is really important to the safety and security of my family so I wanted to share how we prepare. As natural disasters increase and happen more frequently, being prepared helps lessen the stress and anxiety that may cause. Stay safe my friend!