In New England, we’re no strangers to wild weather, in every season. But familiarity doesn’t mean we are prepared for it, especially when that weather can cause life-threatening or expensive damage. At Educators Insurance, we advocate smart planning and preparation throughout the year.
Gather your resources
You can prepare for a hurricane long before the weather’s an issue. Take a calm, sunny day this summer to gather local information. Compile a list of phone numbers or relevant websites for local resources:
- County and town public safety, fire and rescue services
- Local hospital information
- Your utility information, including account numbers
- Your insurance agent’s contact information
Keep an up-to-date, printed list of this information in your home disaster kit. Remember, even in the event of a power outage, paper still works.
Prepare a home disaster kit
In the event of a hurricane or other disaster, would you be able to quickly grab the things your family needs to evacuate for a few days? Compile a home disaster kit, or “go bag,” so that you’re prepared if the unexpected happens. Include the following in your kit:
- At least a three-day supply of water, one gallon per person per day, for drinking and sanitation
- At least a three-day supply of non-perishable food, such as canned goods
- Can opener
- Battery-powered or crank radio with extra batteries
- Flashlight with extra batteries
- First aid kit
- Necessary medical supplies for family members’ long-term medical conditions
- Cell phone with chargers or solar charger
- Necessary medical and food supplies for family pets
Plan next steps
In the event of a quick evacuation, would your extended family know where to find you? And would your immediate family know where to meet? Discuss a plan for where to go in case of emergency — local shelters or the preferred hospital — and share that information. Consider the impact to four-legged family members too; can you plan for their care in the event of an emergency?
Finally, start with local resources. Listen to news either online, on the radio or on TV, to get the latest information on planning, preparation and evacuation for your area. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) offers Ready.gov/hurricanes for information relevant to staying safe in your home and community. The National Weather Service also offers updates, watches and warnings for information on storm surges and flooding. Evaluate your location and proximity to the coast and rivers to better understand your specific needs.