Disaster Scenario | Hurricane
In the last 100-years the type of disaster that has caused the most damage to North America is the Hurricane. Winds ranging from 75-miles per hour all the way up to 250-MPH have been recorded during one of these storms. The damage to property and life has been immeasurable.
A hurricane does not just bring strong winds, it also brings storm surge, driving rain, floods, tornadoes and even starts fires. You must be prepared for this event no matter where you live in the North America. They do travel over land and can cause extreme damage.
According to Wilie Drye of National Geographic, the 2017 hurricane season was the most expensive in United States history. Drye states, “U.S. suffered more than $200 billion worth of damage from 17 named storms during the season,” and Puerto Rico will be feeling the affects for years.
So what do you do about it so you are not caught unprepared. The American Red Cross has put together a check list of what you might want to have for yourself and your family to ride out the storm.
Food and Water
- Store water in plastic containers such as soft drink bottles. Avoid using containers that will decompose or break, such as milk cartons or glass bottles. A normally active person needs to drink at least two quarts of water each day. Hot environments and intense physical activity can double that amount. Children, nursing mothers, and ill people will need more.
- Store one gallon of water per person per day.
- Keep at least a three-day supply of water per person (two quarts for drinking, two quarts for each person in your household for food preparation/sanitation).*
Store at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food. Select foods that require no refrigeration, preparation or cooking, and little or no water. If you must heat food, pack a can of sterno. Select food items that are compact and lightweight. Include a selection of the following foods in your Disaster Supplies Kit:
- Ready-to-eat canned meats, fruits, and vegetables
- Canned juices
- Staples (salt, sugar, pepper, spices, etc.)
- High energy foods
- Food for infants
- Comfort/stress foods
First Aid and Non-Prescription Drugs
First Aid Kit
Assemble a first aid kit for your home and one for each car.
- (20) adhesive bandages, various sizes.
- (1) 5″ x 9″ sterile dressing.
- (1) conforming roller gauze bandage.
- (2) triangular bandages.
- (2) 3 x 3 sterile gauze pads.
- (2) 4 x 4 sterile gauze pads.
- (1) roll 3″ cohesive bandage.
- (2) germicidal hand wipes or waterless alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- (6) antiseptic wipes.
- (2) pair large medical grade non-latex gloves.
- Adhesive tape, 2″ width.
- Anti-bacterial ointment.
- Cold pack.
- Scissors (small, personal).
- CPR breathing barrier, such as a face shield.
- Aspirin or nonaspirin pain reliever
- Anti-diarrhea medication
- Antacid (for stomach upset)
- Activated charcoal (use if advised by the American Association of Poison Control Centers)
Tools and Supplies
- Mess kits, or paper cups, plates, and plastic utensils*
- Emergency preparedness manual*
- Battery-operated radio and extra batteries*
- Flashlight and extra batteries*
- Cash or traveler’s checks, change*
- Non-electric can opener, utility knife*
- Fire extinguisher: small canister ABC type
- Tube tent
- Matches in a waterproof container
- Aluminum foil
- Plastic storage containers
- Signal flare
- Paper, pencil
- Needles, thread
- Medicine dropper
- Shut-off wrench, to turn off household gas and water
- Plastic sheeting
- Map of the area (for locating shelters)
Sanitation, Clothing and Bedding
- Toilet paper, towelettes*
- Soap, liquid detergent*
- Feminine supplies*
- Personal hygiene items*
- Plastic garbage bags, ties (for personal sanitation uses)
- Plastic bucket with tight lid
- Household chlorine bleach
Clothing and Bedding
*Include at least one complete change of clothing and footwear per person.
- Sturdy shoes or work boots*
- Rain gear*
- Blankets or sleeping bags*
- Hat and gloves
- Thermal underwear
Remember family members with special requirements, such as infants and elderly or disabled persons.
- Powdered milk
- Heart and high blood pressure medication
- Prescription drugs
- Denture needs
- Contact lenses and supplies
- Extra eye glasses
- Board games and other games that don’t require batteries or electricity, books for adult readers and for children.
In the interest of protecting pets, the Humane Society of the United States offers these tips for inclusion in your family disaster plan:
- Do not leave your pets behind.
- Securely fasten a current identification tag to your pet’s collar and carry a photograph of your pet. It’s important to include the phone number of a friend or family member on the tag so anyone who may find your pet is able to reach someone who knows you.
- Transport pets in secure pet carriers and keep pets on leashes or harnesses.
- Call hotels in a safe/host location and ask if you can bring your pets. Ask the manager if a no-pet policy can be lifted during the disaster. Most emergency shelters do not admit pets.
- Call friends, family members, veterinarians or boarding kennels in a safe/host location to arrange foster care if you and your pets cannot stay together.
- Pack a week’s supply of food, water and other provisions, such as medication or cat litter.
- Do not wait until the last minute to evacuate. Rescue officials may not allow you to take your pets if you need to be rescued.
- Keep a list of emergency phone numbers (veterinarian, local animal control, animal shelters, Red Cross, etc.).
Possessions and Documents
- Keep these records in a waterproof, portable container:
- Will, insurance policies, contracts, deeds, stocks and bonds
- Passports, social security cards, immunization records
- Bank account numbers
- Credit card account numbers and companies
- Inventory of valuable household goods, important telephone numbers
- Family records (birth, marriage, death certificates)
- Store your kit in a convenient place known to all family members. Keep a smaller version of the supplies kit in the trunk of your car.
- Keep items in airtight plastic bags. Change your stored water supply every six months so it stays fresh. Replace your stored food every six months. Re-think your kit and family needs at least once a year. Replace batteries, update clothes, etc.
- Ask your physician or pharmacist about storing prescription medications.
Source/Reference: American Red Cross