November 17, 2022 by John Fernandez
Watch Now: Hurricane Preparation Safety Tips
(VIDEO: Anne Seiler, a physical therapist at Mariners Hospital, talks about some of the injuries that occur as people prepare for a storm.)
South Florida has been enjoying a lull in hurricane or tropical storm activity over the past few years. This makes emergency managers nervous that a false sense of calm or “it’s not going to happen” mentality might be prevalent among residents.
The tropics have started to heat up, with South Florida keeping an eye on Tropical Storm Erika as the peak of the 2015 Atlantic Hurricane Season approaches. Now is the perfect time to take a moment to review your family’s hurricane plan. You should create a hurricane kit, that includes documents such as passports, homeowner’s insurance policies and other hard-to-replace items. According to the National Hurricane Center, you should also assess the following:
- Knowing whether you live in an evacuation zone.
- If you do need to evacuate, where would you and your family ride out the storm if an evacuation is ordered.
- Find a friend or relative that lives outside the evacuation zone and have a plan to weather the storm with them.
- Establish and rehearse a family communications plan in case the emergency arises when you are not together.
If and when storm warnings are issued, you should take steps to protect your property. Keep in mind that many injuries occur during last minute preparations, so heed the warnings and give yourself time to perform the following:
- Cover all of your home’s windows.
- Permanent storm shutters offer the best protection for windows.
- Board up windows with 5/8” exterior grade or marine plywood, cut to fit and ready to install.
- Installation of impact glass is the best option. (Tape does not prevent windows from breaking).
- Trim trees and shrubs around your home. This will make them more resistant to high winds.
- Clear loose and clogged rain gutters and downspouts.
- If possible, reinforce your garage doors; if wind enters a garage it can cause serious damage.
- Bring in outdoor furniture, decorations, garbage cans and anything else that is not tied down.
- Plan how and where you will secure your boat whether on a trailer or at a dock.
The Baptist Health South Florida News Team talks to one expert about how to safely prepare for a storm. Watch it now.