Monday, August 22, 2011

Hurricanes: Are you prepared??

Now that Hurricane Season 2011 is in full swing, are you prepared? It's never easy to prepare for a hurricane, but having some supplies on hand and a plan if an evacuation is needed is always a good idea.

Got Emergency Supplies?
So you've got about 20 tubes of toothpaste, and 12 bottles of body wash in the closet, but what about your bottled water stash, or those batteries you need for your flashlight or radio? While batteries and water won't be free, I know I don't want to have to pay full price for them when a storm is on the way. Stocking up on your emergency supplies ahead of time will not only save you money, but you are sure to have it. The stores always sell out of emergency supplies very quickly. So exactly what should you have on hand?
Here's a few items that I think are essential:
Bottled Water
Batteries (Be sure you have all the sizes for whatever flashlights/electronics you may want to use)
One Week Supply Non-Perishable Food
Paper Towels
Paper Plates & Cups
Plastic Utensils
Baby Items (Formula, Food, Diapers, Wipes)
Food For Any Pets
Any Prescription Medication
Children's Tylenol, Motrin, etc.
Activities For The Kids!!!! (Something that is new and interesting will help to keep them busy longer. Get (and hide) some NEW activity, word search, coloring books, etc.)

Get A Plan!
If an evacuation is needed, be sure that you have a plan for where you are going, where you are going to stay, and how you are going to get there. Have alternate routes mapped out. If you have a GPS check for updates. Again have activities to keep the kids busy during the trip. If you have a car DVD player or a lap top for watching movies, be sure to pack all their favorites.

If you've ever planned an evacuation you know what a nightmare it can truly be to find a hotel room within a reasonable distance. It's a good idea to have a contact list with the names and numbers of hotels in a few towns in which you would like to stay should you need to evacuate. This way when the time comes you can begin calling right away, because you've already done your research. If you have pets, be sure to check for pet friendly hotels when making your list. Also be sure to check for any amenities you would like, that might come in handy when traveling during an evacuation such laundry services or complimentary breakfast. When I'm traveling for a vacation, I usually don't want to spend time doing my laundry, I'd rather pack that up and do it when I get home; however, if I'm coming home to no electricity, this is definitely something that I would want to do before heading home. Evacuating can be quite an expense, so a hotel that offers a complimentary breakfast would be an added bonus.

Book early, but be sure you know the hotels cancellation policy in case plans change. Traffic is always a factor when evacuating, so let the hotel know you may be checking in late, this way they will hold your reservation.

You can also search for camp grounds with cabin rentals. If you are evacuating with other families, this can really help with your expenses. You can split the cost of the rental and this will then allow you the ability to prepare your own meals which will cut your cost. As you know the cost of eating out can add up very quickly.

Return Home Prepared.
If you've evacuated, and are returning to a home without electricity, be sure to do some grocery shopping before heading home. Pick up any items your family may need, because your selection will be limited once you've arrived home. If you've taken along your laptop or the kids' video games, be sure to give them a full charge in the hotel room before leaving. And be sure to always come home with CASH. If you are a debit card lover like me, this is really important to remember, in case you find yourself needing anything while the electricity is out.

So what are your Hurricane Preparedness tips?? I'd love to hear them.


  1. I'm going to forward this post to my mom, she lives in Florida. Great post, thank you!! Stumbled.

  2. I live in Buffalo and we need these kind of preparations in the WINTER! Great post!