Dear friends, As we are making our final preparations for the storm, we are praying for all families that may be impacted.
Some areas are under evacuation orders, and officials are urging people to heed the warnings. (Florida Gov. Rick Scott put it bluntly: “If you live in any evacuation zones and you’re still at home, LEAVE!”) If you are traveling North, please take care and we pray for safe travels.
If you are not in an evacuation zone and plan to shelter at home as we are, some items lying around your house may be just what you need to get through a few difficult days.
Here are some hurricane tips that you may not have thought of:
Fill Ziplock bags full of water and freeze them standing upright
Fill Ziploc bags three-quarters full of water and stack them standing upright in your freezer. This will help keep your freezer cold longer in case of a power outage, and it will also give you a good supply of fresh drinking water if needed. Remember, you should stockpile at least 1 gallon of water per person/animal per day for at least three days.
Turn your washing machine into a cooler
Before the storm hits, fill up your washing machine with ice, put items inside that you want to keep chilled and close the lid to keep them cool. Don’t worry about what to do when the ice starts to melt — the machine is designed to drain water.
Fill your bathtub full of water
This is an old standby for emergency preparations: fill your bathtub up with water before the storm hits. The water can be used to flush toilets, clean dishes or it can be purified and used as extra drinking water. If you have time, buy bags to line the tub before filling it to keep water lean for drinking, the National Weather Service recommends.
Put pieces of sod into a kiddie pool to make a potty area for your dog (for future reference…it may be too late for this tip)
If you have to shelter at home and you have a pet, expect your animal will need to remain indoors until you’re told it’s safe to do otherwise. That means your pet will need a safe place to relieve itself while inside. Every Dog Has Its Day, a dog training facility in Orlando, Florida, recommends putting sod in a kiddie pool and putting it in your garage (if it isn’t likely to flood). That way, you’ll have “a safe place for your dogs to potty during the storm,” the group wrote in a Facebook post that has been shared nearly 25,000 times.
Use a water bottle and a flashlight to make a lantern
If you don’t go camping, you’ll probably never use a lantern again. So, don’t buy one. There’s an easier solution: Tape a flashlight to the underside of a water bottle — or water jug — to help illuminate a room if the power goes out. This hack will also work with your smartphone. Simply place a plastic bottle over the lash light on your smartphone for the same effect.
Embrace your dishwasher
If there are pictures or other small items you’d like to keep safe, try storing them in plastic bags and placing them inside your dishwasher. But first, turn off the water supply to the unit. “It’s sealed to keep water in, so it should do just fine keeping it out too, Just make sure all your dishes are taken out before loading up important documents or belongings.” Plastic bins, washing machines, dryers and safe boxes can also be used to help preserve valuables.
**However, it’s important to note none of these options are guaranteed to be 100 percent waterproof. If you must evacuate your home, make sure you bring all important documents — your passport, copies of insurance policies, a form of state issued ID, etc. — with you.
Use aluminum dish pans to keep furniture out of water
This tip won’t be much help if major flooding occurs, but it can be helpful if a few inches of water seep into your home. Place the disposable aluminum cooking trays under the legs of furniture to help minimize water damage. By JENNIFER EARL CBS NEWS September 7, 2017
Here are some safety tips emergency management and FEMA officials are offering:
1. If you are ordered to evacuate, you need to evacuate. The best way to stay safe is to be away from the storm’s landfall.
The orders to evacuate are issued based on historical flood maps and the strength of the storm.
2. Fallen trees and power poles will isolate residential areas. Power outages could last for weeks to possibly months.
3. If you are in a mobile home, leave.
4. Do not leave your pets at home, especially if they are outside.
If you stay
If you choose not to, or cannot leave, here are a few things you should do:
1. Get in a more secure room in your home – a closet or a bathroom without a window.
2. Stay on the bottom floor of your home unless water is rising.
3. Do not go into your attic to escape rising water, you could get trapped. If you absolutely have to get in the attic to survive rising water, make sure you take an ax with you so you can cut a hole in the roof to escape.
4. If you are in an area that will flood, turn off electricity at the main breaker before water gets in your home to reduce the risk of electrocution.
5. Of course, do not try to go outside during the storm. Pieces of buildings, roofs, trees and other objects will be flying through the air.
6. Do not use candles as a light source – flashlights are what you need to use.
During or after the storm
1. Do not use a generator during a storm.
2. Never use portable generators inside a home, in your garage, in your basement, or in a crawl space.
3. Generators produce carbon monoxide and if they are inside your house, your home can fill up with carbon monoxide. Carbon monoxide will kill you if you breathe too much of it. If you are using a portable generator to power appliances in your home following the storm, make sure you have a carbon monoxide alarm. Appliances should be plugged directly into a generator. Do not hook the generator to your household electrical system. You can hurt yourself and kill utility workers when they begin to reconnect electricity to homes.
4. Do not get anywhere near standing water. It could contain live electric wires. If you come in contact with it, you could be electrocuted. If you see wires on the ground after the storm, assume they are live.
Please be safe!
Carlleen Wilson | Realtor® | eXp Realty LLC
Luxury Home Marketing Specialist, CLHMS Member
Multi-Million Dollar Producer | The Coastal Club Real Estate Group
MRP | Military Relocation Professional
VAREP | Veterans Association of Real Estate Professionals | Board Member
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