Hurricane season is officially upon us…are you prepared? In our last blog we explained how your home can withstand harsh weather conditions even better than site-built homes. To ensure your safety during this time of year, it’s essential to create a plan to be ahead of the storm. From assembling an emergency kit to planning for your pets, we’re here to help guide you with these preparation tips.
Creating an evacuation plan
The first step in hurricane preparedness is writing out your evacuation plan with the whole family. Plan your route, where you’ll go, and how you’ll get there. It’s also important to note if you live in an evacuation zone. Typically, the closer you are to the perimeter of the state, the more likely you are to be in a zone that is among the first to evacuate. This tool can help you determine whether you live in an evacuation zone or not.
Friendly Reminder: Follow evacuation orders when they are administered, and it never hurts to have a back-up plan to your back-up plan!
Assembling an emergency supplies kit
Get ahead of the crowds and start putting together an emergency supplies kit to ensure you have all the storm necessities in case of emergency. It’s smart to stock up on these items beforehand, as stores will likely run low in the wake of a storm. Below is a handy check list of items to consider including in your supplies kit:
- Water – 3-day supply
- Non-perishable food – 3-day supply
- Portable chargers and power banks for cell phones
- Manual can opener
- First-aid kit and medication
- Personal hygiene and sanitation items
- Special needs items for pets and babies
- Battery-operated radio
- Lighters and matches
- Waterproof container with cash and important documents
- Cooler and ice packs
Preparing your home
Although your home is sturdy enough to withstand harsh hurricane conditions, you should still take some extra precautions to prepare the exterior and interior of your home. Be sure to check the condition of your home’s tie-downs in the next few weeks. You might be able to check yourself, but it’s strongly recommended to have an evaluation by a licensed mobile home installer. To cover your windows, it’s best to use hurricane shutters or wood since tape can help with preventing shattered glass but not preventing breakage. Cover your windows in such a way to prevent a lot of light from entering and warming up the inside of your home should your A/C be out.
As for the inside of your home, make sure to turn down the temperature of your fridge and/or freeze food and drinking water. Remember to move refrigerated items into a cooler with ice packs four hours after losing power. For washing and flushing purposes, fill your bathtub and large water containers. Additionally, secure your door(s) and bring in anything outdoors that isn’t tied down.
Planning for pets
It’s especially important to plan for the furry friend(s) you have in your life. Keep in mind that public shelters don’t allow pets, so if you need to evacuate you should make arrangements in advance. Contact your veterinarian or local kennels to see if they can help in any way. Make sure your pets have identification tags for your home and evacuation destination.
If you aren’t instructed to evacuate, bring your pets inside your home early as they should never be left outside during a storm. Pets can become anxious because of the storm, so be sure to comfort them. Putting them inside a carrier might make them feel more secure. You might have no option but to leave your pet at home, in which case you should put them in a room far away from windows with toys, bedding, food, and water. If your pets wear a chain choke collar, replace it with a nylon or vinyl one with identification tags.
Don’t get caught up in the calm before the storm and start developing your plan now. Make sure to stay tuned for next month’s blog and, in case you missed it, check out our recent blog about the reliability of hand-built homes during hurricane season. Follow us on Facebook , Instagram , and Twitter for further updates.