As Hurricane Preparedness Week (May 5-11) in North Carolina passes, the official 2019 Atlantic Hurricane Season quickly approaches – beginning on June 1, 2019 and ending on November 30, 2019.
ARE YOU PREPARED?
Follow our 5 tips for Hurricane Preparedness to protect your family, business and property.
1. Know Where To Go
Knowing where to go by developing a storm preparation evacuation plan is essential for safety. Evacuation happens when a storm surge occurs, causing the water level to rise abnormally high, therefore it is important to familiarize yourself with local evacuation routes in your area and to make arrangements for a place to stay during an evacuation. You should also put an evacuation plan in place for your pets, as most shelters only allow service animals. If you are unsure of where to go, or what your evacuation route is, you can contact your local emergency management agency or check with your local city or county commissioner website for your evacuation route.
2. Create a Family Communication Plan and/or Business Continuity Plan
Family Communication Plan
It is a good idea to have a few options in mind should you be forced to evacuate. Communicate with your family now to create a solid evacuation plan detailing what you will do in the event you will stay or evacuate. Make sure everyone knows the evacuation routes, and have a supply kit on hand for everyone. For more information go to FEMA Family Communication Plan.
Business Continuity Plan
Do you have a Business Continuity Plan for your company? If so, does everyone understand it? You can never be too prepared in the event of a major storm. A Business Continuity Plan includes employee communication protocols, data, computer network, server, IT, infrastructure, and backup support should your business be affected by a hurricane, storm surge, damaging winds, flood and/or power outage. If you do not have one yet, delegate a team to create your Business Continuity Plan. Communicate this plan to your employees, to ensure that your business operations will continue, so everyone stays safe and informed in the event of a storm. Maintaining an up-to-date business continuity is also important. For more information, go to FEMA’s Ready Business Hurricane Toolkit.
3. Put Together a Supply List
In the event of an approaching storm, having the right supplies on hand is crucial. Some recommended items are; cash, flashlights, batteries, first-aid kits, area maps, food, water, cleaning supplies, gas, and a battery or solar powered radio, to name a few. Be sure to also keep any medications and copies of your critical information on hand in the event of an evacuation.
Experts recommend having at least 3 days worth of food, water and supplies on hand. Don’t forget supplies for your pets too! If you have a generator, you may want to perform a maintenance check to make sure it is working properly.
4. Protect Your Home and/or Business
There are many measures you can take to help ensure your home and/or business will be protected during a major storm. Inspecting your property for any existing damage that may increase during a hurricane is one measure you can take. If you have any structural issues, loose shingles or damaged roofs, they should be fixed as soon as possible (we can help). If there are trees near your property, trimming the branches can help prevent damage in the event of strong winds. To help prevent additional damage, it may be a good idea to clean and secure your rain gutters, and reinforce windows and doors. If you have hurricane shutters, be sure to locate them for immediate access and prepare yourself on how to install them if need be. If you plan on using plywood to cover your windows, it is a good idea to purchase your supplies now.
5. Check Your Insurance Policy
All property owners should be familiar with their insurance policies in the event you need to file a property damage insurance claim for work. If you have questions about your policy, contact your insurance provider to learn more and review the details of your policy. When living in a hurricane-prone area, it is important to include flood insurance on your policy. You can visit www.floodsmart.gov to learn about the flood risk and flood insurance options for your area. Make sure to have copies of all important documents stored in your Supply Kit, as well as a secondary location that is not prone to hurricane damage (i.e. cloud storage, email a family member in another state, etc.). You will need to have access to proof of ownership documents for all property including homes, businesses, cars, and boats.
You can never be too prepared for storm season. By following these hurricane preparedness tips, you will be on the right track to staying safe during any hurricane!
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**If your family or business encounters any property damage call Total Construction at 919-625-7115!
More Hurricane Preparedness Resources:
- Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
- FEMA App
- FEMA Business Hurricane Toolkit
- FEMA Emergency Supply List
- FEMA National Flood Insurance Program
- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Evacuation Zone Finder
- National Weather Service
- National Weather Service Definitions: Watches, Warnings, Advisories and Outlooks
- National Weather Service Hurricane Tips
- Gov Phone Alerts
- Ready.Gov Hurricane Supply Kit List