Prepare Your Home for a Disaster

 

With the news of Hurricane Florence approaching the East Coast, we are reminded that even though we are far from the coast, North Texas is still susceptible to natural disasters. It’s important to take necessary precautions to prepare your home. Read below to find out what you should do before a storm, and be sure to share this disaster preparedness information with friends and family.


Gather disaster supplies
* water: One gallon of water per person per day for at least three days (drinking and sanitation)
* food: At least a three-day supply of non-perishable food (canned meat, milk, fish, fruit and vegetables)
* battery-powered or hand-crank radio
* flashlight
* extra batteries
* cell phone with chargers and a backup battery
* cash
* first aid supplies
* medications (both prescription and non-prescription)
* personal identification
* non-electric can opener and utility knife (like a Swiss Army knife)
* local maps
* moist towelettes, garbage bags, and plastic ties (for sanitation)
* bar soap/toiletries
* blankets or sleeping bags
* change of clothes for each family member (rain gear, sturdy shoes)
* paper cups, plates, and plastic utensils
* wrench or pliers (to turn off utilities)
* whistle (to signal for help)
* special items for babies/young children/elderly
* copies of your critical information:
– wills, insurance policies, contracts, deeds, and investment information
– passports, social security cards, immunization records, and medical/emergency information
– bank account numbers, credit card account numbers
– list of valuable household goods
– family records and photos (e.g., birth, adoption, and marriage certificates)
– pet records (vaccination records and medical information)
– list of accounts with log-in information and passwords

Click here to download an Emergency Supply List from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.


Stay updated

Pay attention to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio, a smart phone, or a portable radio for updates and weather information. Staying in-the-know will allow you to be proactive if a storm suddenly changes direction, speed, or intensity.


Protect important documents

Valuables and important documents should be stored in a safe deposit box on the highest level of your home.

Prepare your refrigerator/freezer
Turn your unit to the coldest setting, and only open it when absolutely necessary. Fill plastic Ziploc bags with water and stick the bags between items and in open spaces in your freezer.


Store drinking water

Use clean bathtubs, sinks, and plastic bottles to store drinking water.


Unplug major appliances

This will help reduce the power surge when electricity is restored.

Fill cars up with gas


Bring outdoor objects inside (i.e. lawn furniture, hanging plants, etc.)


Trim or remove limbs from trees


Prepare your doors/windows

Close all interior doors; secure and brace external doors.

 

Go over evacuation plan
– Select a place to meet if your family becomes separated
– Decide what route you would take to get there
– Bring your disaster supplies
– Keep a list of emergency contacts
– Plan ahead for pets

Evacuate if advised
Make sure to bring your disaster supplies and let an out-of-town contact know where you are going.

 

For more information, visit:

American Red Cross
Ready.Gov (Official website of the Department of Homeland Security)
HealthyChildren.org

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