Though you ought to spend more, if possible, a mere fifteen minutes of preparation can save you from a world of pain, frustration, discomfort, and danger when a hurricane hits.
To help you spend those fifteen minutes wisely, we’ve put together a short list of five hurricane safety tips for your home - without leaving your home or going out for anything you don’t already have handy.
1) Get Educated. Quickly.
Familiarize yourself with the standard emergency procedures for your area, such as evacuation routes, and determine whether there’s a risk of flooding for your home or roads you frequently use. The fewer surprises if something goes wrong, the safer you’ll be. Get the Florida Emergency Preparedness Guide from Floridahealth.gov here!
If there is a risk of flooding, figure out where the breaker box for your home is, and consider disabling power in advance. Going without power is uncomfortable, but major flooding combined with live power can become a serious threat to the safety of your home, your family, and possible rescue workers.
2) Secure Loose Objects Inside & Outside
Every loose object outside of your home is a potential projectile when the winds pick up, so try to avoid having too many pieces of loose furniture, children’s toys, grilling equipment, et cetera sitting around your home—or in exterior rooms with windows. If you do have these things out during hurricane season, make sure you have a plan for storing them quickly when the storm rolls in.
3) Secure Windows, Doors, & Other Openings
The better you can secure your windows, exterior doors, and any other openings into your home before a hurricane, the better. If you want to invest a bit more than 15 minutes, having impact windows and doors installed can create a major improvement in your hurricane safety home preparedness, minimizing the risk of damage to exterior rooms of your home.
In lieu of that, make sure they’re closed and locked at minimum. Ideally you can have them shuttered and sealed around the edges; refreshing the weather stripping on your front door can mean the difference between a flooded front room and passing the storm without incident.
3) Disconnect the Electricity
If there’s a threat of flooding, you’ll want to avoid the risk of electrocution, damaged electrical systems, or even an electrical fire by turning off the electricity for the at-risk area. That means flipping individual breakers or turning off the main switch.
Turning off power should only be done if there’s a risk of flooding.
4) Put Together an Emergency Kit
You don’t necessarily need to have a duffel bag with all of the necessities tucked away, but at the very least read up on hurricane emergency kit items and keep a checklist handy. When the hurricane gets close, you can go through the list and collect the items necessary.
Of course, its best if you can have as much of the list as possible stored in a go-bag, so it can double for evacuations if necessary; consider what your budget allows.
5) Take refuge in a Sturdy, Interior Room
The best action you can take for your safety and the safety of your family, once all else is handled, is finding a secure interior room without windows to ride out the storm. Once a safe space is identified, prepare a room for comfort by bringing in chairs or television if time allows.
A reliable room for hurricane safety is windowless, protected by other rooms around it, and not likely to flood. If your home doesn’t have a room like this, evacuation may be necessary, unless you have high grade impact windows and doors installed.
Prepare for Next Time By Installing Impact Windows & Doors!
Fifteen minutes of preparation is better than none at all - but if you can avoid limiting yourself to little preparation time you’ll be much better off. When it comes to preparing your home to face the fury of a hurricane, being proactive instead of reactive is key.
If you really want to secure your home, protect your property, and keep your family safe from the weather, you’re going to want to storm-proof your home in advance. That means installing impact doors and windows, keeping your roof and walls well-maintained, and checking up on your drainage systems. It’s worth the investment of time and money—for peace of mind, safety, and long-term savings.
Contact Alco today for a friendly and informative partner in planning your next safety project.