Hurricane Preparedness: What to Do Before, During & After a Storm

flooded streets with submerged barriers

Hurricanes are threatening the lives and homes of many people in many areas around the U.S. Those who are fortunate enough to be in areas where the hurricanes are barely felt are busy organizing to help affected citizens.

While you should be thankful that you have been spared, that doesn’t mean you will always be safe. Hurricanes can happen anywhere, and it’s best to be prepared just in case a natural phenomenon like this visits your city or town. Even as you’re busy helping others, you should also have some precautions in place for your own home.

Before the Storm

If a storm is about to hit your area, be prepared. Make adjustments to your home to keep it safe, such as boarding up windows or installing storm windows, inspecting and repairing your roof, checking your doors, etc. Have a supply of food both in your cupboards and in a bug-out bag. Charge your cell phones. Remove the debris in your yard that can go flying and hit your home. For homes in low-lying areas, it is safer to just secure your home, pack some essentials, and evacuate to a safer area. Make sure to check your insurance policy on your property, and to take pictures of your home before the storm hits.

During the Storm

Stay in a safe, warm place during the storm. If your home is on low ground or close to a body of water, it is safer to be in an evacuation center, a storm shelter, or in a friend’s home away from the storm. Know where your family members are at all times. Don’t go out while it is storming. Keep your emergency bag close and have a flashlight ready. Know where you can go for safety in case you have to leave your home in the middle of the storm.

After the Storm

If you had to evacuate, wait for the floodwaters to subside or wait for the all-clear from the authorities before going back to your home. Don’t enter your house if it looks like it’s about to fall apart or cave in. Assess the damage to your home. Take pictures for the insurance. Board up any broken windows or doors, making sure to take pictures first, but avoid removing debris until your insurance adjuster has seen it. If there is water, or if it smells moldy, it’s probably best to stay somewhere else for the meantime. For water damage in Salt Lake City call a professional to deal with it as soon as possible.

Preparation can save your life. People may be powerless against the wrath of nature, but if you know what to do, you have a better chance of surviving to tell the tale.