Step One - Create A Communications Plan
This can be done way in advance and always in place for when disaster strikes, not for just when hurricanes occur. Designate primary and secondary meeting points, discuss which social media posts you're going to post to to find one another if you become separated. Memorize each others mobile phone numbers. Designated a common family member of friend well removed from the geographic area that you can relay information through. Use a personal protection app like Virtual Halo so you can check in with each other and transmit your exact location (basic services are free). Keep your mobile phones charged and have spare battery chargers fully charged at all times.

Unlike tornadoes, Hurricane's give a little notice so potentially affected residents can take a little action to achieve maximum safety. Below are a group of tools recommended for you to use when preparing for a hurricane. Be safe out there... and good luck!

Everyone needs to be prepared for the unexpected. Your friends and family may not be together when disaster strikes. How will you find each other? Will you know if your children or parents are safe? You may have to evacuate or be confined to your home. What will you do if water, gas, electricity or phone services are shut off?

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Step Two - Develop a Family Emergency Plan
This will include what to do during what type of disaster and should have provisions for when you're home and when you're traveling. Ready.gov had made planning a snap, visit their site here. Immediate steps to take include:

  • How will I receive my warnings?
  • What is my shelter plan?
  • What is my evacuation route?
  • What are the dietary needs of my household?
    • Get any provisions including batteries and flashlights that will be needed.
  • What planning do you need to make for your pet(s)?

Step Three - Constantly Review the FEMA Evacuation Guidelines
And follow all directions given by local and state governments. Access FEMA Evacuation Guidelines here

When waiting out a storm, be careful, the danger may not be over yet when everything looks clear. Be alert for tornadoes - they are often spawned by hurricanes. Also, during the "eye" of the storm, it may seem like the storm is over, but it's not. Once the eye passes, the winds will pickup quickly and change directly back into hurricane force.

After the storm, wait until your area is declared safe by emergency management personnel before returning home. And remember, recovering from a natural disaster is often a gradual process. Good luck and be safe!

RESOURCES

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