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How to prepare for a hurricane: step by step instructions


Source: WikiHow

Hurricane Dorian is looming in the United States, predicted to be the most powerful of the season. Preparation will help you cope with the physical challenges of the storm while maintaining your peace of mind. This knowledge will be useful not only a couple of days before a hurricane, but also in the future: the risk of a hurricane exists everywhere.

Фото: Depositphotos

Essential items

1. Assemble the rescue kit

Buy enough food and water to last a few days, recommends WikiHow. Canned food is the only species acceptable for an event like a hurricane. Be sure to check the expiration date to make sure the food is fresh. Always keep such supplies on hand in case of emergency.

Stock up on canned goods that do not require the addition of water or milk.

Get a bath if you decide to stay at home. The water in the middle bath is enough for about three days. This will also flush the toilet with a bucket.

There is a lot of water in the water heater of your house. On average, an 150-liter water heater has enough water to support one person for a month. More information about this can be found here.

The average person needs about 3,5 liters of water per day. Pets (dogs) need about 1,75 L of water per day. Cats need much less water.

2. Prepare a fridge and freezer

Do this when the storm enters your area and you can settle for a long time. Eat perishable foods first in anticipation of a power outage. Fill the refrigerator and freezer with bottled water and sealed, non-perishable food. The more your freezer is filled, the more products will be able to keep cold and maintain an overall low temperature. The same goes for the refrigerator compartment.

Put the maximum amount of water and liquid in the refrigerator; in the event of a power outage, this will help keep the cold longer. We hope just before the time when electricity is restored.

Put all the ice that you have in the freezer in plastic bags. Fill the entire space in the freezer with ice bags. Also freeze water bottles.

3. Stock up on the necessary medicines

Make sure you have the prescribed medications you and your family take regularly. Some insurances do not provide for replenishment of medicines until the previous supply is almost exhausted or runs out.

If necessary, medicines can be purchased without insurance; weeks can pass without the ability to replenish the reserve, putting your health at risk. During hurricanes, you should always have medicines in reserve, because in case of a storm, pharmacies will be closed.

4. Make sure you have essentials

You must have supplies to live if you and your family are locked in your house for a week without access to electricity, running water and shops. This includes light sources (powered by a battery or crank), a hand-held can opener, a first-aid kit, and hygiene products.

Print a care guide so you know what to do if this happens. Such a guide can скачать здесь.

Фото: Depositphotos

5. Take stock with you

You can grab basic necessities with you if you decide to evacuate by car. Food and water will have to take less due to lack of space in the transport. But there are additional things that you will need if you decide to leave:

  • torches;
  • physical cards;
  • connecting cables (cables);
  • additional gas cans.

6. Check emergency items every couple of months

This is necessary to ensure that the supplies are in good condition and fresh.

So you will be ready for any unforeseen situation. Create a list in which all items will be classified and dated.

Inflate air mattresses to make sure they do not need patches or replacements.

Use the battery tester to check the charge of spare batteries.

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Strengthen your home

1. Make sure your home insurance is valid.

Sometimes home insurance does not include flood insurance, in which case you will have to buy it separately. It is needed just in case, if a hurricane really causes serious damage to your home, you will have a guarantee that you can rebuild when everything is over.

2. Protect windows

Close all doors and windows. If you do not have shutters in case of a hurricane, hammer the doors and windows of the house with plywood. This will strengthen them, so that the wind and rain can not greatly damage your property. It is also a good idea to strengthen the garage doors so that everything is protected there.

This is best done as soon as you hear the hurricane heading towards you so that by the time the storm picks up speed, you are no longer outside.

3. Learn how to turn off gas and power in your home.

Make sure you have all the necessary tools for the job. If you do not know how to do this, speak with a gas or electric company for instructions. When the storm comes, you should take all the necessary safety measures. Be sure to listen to officials during this time to know when it will be possible to turn on the gas and electricity again.

4. Cut trees and branches near the house and car

If a large tree falls on your house, it can punch a large hole in the roof. If a big tree falls on your car, it will easily break it.

Remove dried trees and bushes. Ask the gardener or public utilities to remove dry trees and branches and evaluate the health of the plants near the house.

Miami residents protect windows ahead of Hurricane Dorian. Photo: Depositphotos

5. Get a generator

If your family has special medical needs or you absolutely need air conditioning, be prepared to pay more for a generator that can handle this. Find online generator power calculators to make sure you are not buying more than you need.

Buy some gas cylinders on 20 liters. After a hurricane, there is usually a lack of fuel, and many gas stations even limit the amount of gas / gas that you can purchase after waiting in line.
If you cannot purchase a generator, buy an AC / DC converter. With it, you will use your car as a mobile electric generator. You will need a large extension cord to connect power to the house.

Do not start the car or gasoline generator in the garage, because carbon monoxide poisoning can be fatal.

6. Assign a "safe room"

This is in case of violation of the integrity of your home. The "safe room" should not have windows or external doors, and preferably only one internal door. It will be a place for you and your family to step back in case the storm gets too serious. Make sure that this room has all the supplies in case you cannot make more than one outing when you hide in this room.

Create a plan for the family

1. Stay up to date

How often to watch the weather forecast is up to you, but if you start to feel depressed or panic, turn off this channel. Keep in mind that many hurricanes move slowly. As soon as you find out about the impending storm, most likely you will have several days to complete the deal. Do not lose your vigilance and do not take things too lightly, because, as you know, hurricanes can suddenly pick up speed or change course. Knowing the weather forecast will allow you and your family to be prepared for the worst-case scenario.

2. Find local escape routes

Check the sites of your city and region to find information on which roads to use if leaving the hurricane zone. Be sure to check all available options to see which of them will work best. Plan on using several routes, as you may not leave your home if the storm comes quickly.

3. Discuss and study the emergency plan

Make sure everyone in the family knows who to contact and how to stay in touch out of reach. If your family is somehow divided, you need to make sure that every member of the family knows where to go in order to get to a safe place.

4. Inform your children

Make sure they know enough information so that an adult can contact this person if a sudden evacuation is necessary when you are not near them. If you have young children, write important contact information on the index card and give it to them if they are somehow separated from you.

If your older children have cell phones, make sure your contact information and any other emergency numbers are on their contact list.

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Фото: Depositphotos

5. Choose an evacuation location

This may be the house of a friend or family member with whom you have agreed. Contact him in advance and make sure that he will be in the city at about the time a hurricane should arrive. Be sure to find out where the nearest shelters are if you need to immediately find shelter.

You must evacuate if:

  • You live in a mobile home or in a trailer. They are unsafe even during a storm of the first category.
  • You live in a high-rise building. The winds are stronger at high altitudes, and this will cause the building to swing.
  • You live near an area prone to storm surges. Make sure the house is not flooded by storm surges or waves.

6. Keep a physical copy of the emergency plan

The learned information may be forgotten over time, especially one that is not used in everyday activities. When you and your family create a plan for a hurricane, write it down. Record each step, location, and inventory so that family members can view it every few months to keep it in their memory. Thus, when a hurricane approaches, all family members will be able to go to the finished plan, and not try to recall every detail again.

7. Save some money

Leave some money for emergency use in case of a hurricane. After a storm, you can spend this money on restoring everything that was not covered by insurance. You can also give this money to friends, relatives or neighbors who may not have had insurance; they will definitely appreciate such help.


  • Stay away from windows during a storm.
  • An 20 liter bucket with a trash bag will be a good emergency toilet. An alternative is to dig a hole in the yard and use it as an emergency toilet. You can also pour cat litter in a bucket of 20 liters. This will absorb the liquid and allow you to use the bag repeatedly before throwing it away.
  • You can purchase a car refrigerator. It runs on a car battery. Although not large, a car refrigerator can store at least a daily supply of food and, of course, can be replenished as needed.
  • Fill the bathtub with water before the hurricane if you plan to stay at home to make sure you have enough water to flush the toilet, drink, cook, and so on.
  • Do not flush the toilet if there is no water in the tank. The waste left there will create an unpleasant odor in your home. Flushing the toilet requires about 4 liters of water. Instead, you can put a garbage bag in the toilet itself, and thus take out the waste from the house.
  • Stay away from sharp objects, especially if the wind is very strong.
  • Not everyone should follow all these steps or tips, they are optional if you are not in the epicenter of the storm or close to it. In this case, you can only expect heavy rain and wind.
  • Communication and teamwork - the main thing in an emergency. Get together, work together and follow the instructions of the security staff.
  • Do not forget to buy a flashlight with a crank, so as not to use batteries. But still buy batteries for other battery-powered equipment.
  • Take valuable objects with you, and wrap what is left at home with plastic and place it higher. Even if you are leaving, photographs, insurance papers and other important documents should be in tightly sealed bags.


  1. Do not get lost when the epicenter of a hurricane passes by. This does not mean that the storm is over.
  2. Listen to the instructions of both the Red Cross and government officials.
  3. Do not hesitate to leave if: (a) you are under mandatory evacuation procedures; (b) it is likely a category 3 – 5 hurricane, and you are within 160 km from the coast; (c) you live in a mobile home or camper, and a hurricane of any force moves towards you; or (e) you cannot shut or hammer a house with boards.
  4. Remember that the risk of a hurricane is everywhere.
  5. The slower the hurricane, the more likely it will be accompanied by heavy rain, which can lead to flooding. If the hurricane moves very slowly and you live in a valley, move to a higher platform. If the hurricane moves very fast, most of the damage will be related to the wind.

What you need

  • Self-loading lamps. This equipment is equipped with a solar panel and / or has a hand-held generator integrated in the lamp and radio. This will save you money on batteries. Some of these models will also charge mobile phones.
  • Glowing sticks. They will be safer than candles if there are gas leaks in your area, explosive, flammable chemicals.
  • Lanterns for a garden on solar batteries. You can charge them in the sun during the day and use indoors for illumination at night.
  • Canned goods and a can opener, fruits, vegetables and other products that do not require refrigeration.
  • Mobile phone and additional charged external batteries. Solar chargers are useful for long-term blackouts.
  • DC to AC converter.
  • Wet wipes.
  • Battery powered fans will be very useful if the power is turned off.
  • A lot of batteries of all sizes (you can always use later what was not used during the storm).
    Consider buying a rechargeable battery to power battery-powered devices at home.
  • Many large plastic garbage bags for the disposal of waste and other garbage.
  • Stock toilet paper and other toiletries as needed.
  • At least one bucket of 20 liters and cat litter (biodegradable) for use in the toilet.

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