Helpful Thoughts on Hurricane Preparedness

Before Hurricane Season Starts

Exterior of House:

  • Locate shutter diagrams, instructions, videos, wing nuts, and bolts.
  • Copy and laminate shutter instruction plan to prevent water damage and loss.
  • Purchase wing nut adapter to allow wing nut easy installation for paneled shutters.
  • Fill propane tanks for house and bbq. Also have an additional portable tank filled and stored safely.
  • Clean out gutters and downspouts before season.
  • Trim Trees and Vegetation.
  • If you have accordion or roll down shutters – test shutters before season starts to see if any maintenance is required.
  • Purchase lighting oil for outside torches, lanterns, and alike.
  • Purchase pool chlorine – a minimum of 30 gallons and store safely.
  • Purchase a 24′ ladder allowing for an easier reach for paneled shutters
  • Purchase a chain saw and additional chain saw key. Be Very Careful Operating and Read Instructions First.
  • Purchase a generator and fill with gas – portable generators are good for after the storm, but consider a permanent generator to service the house or portion of the house during and after storm. Always store portable generators outdoors.
  • Purchase several boxes of large landscape size garbage bags.
  • Clean the garage to allow cars to be stored during the storm.
  • Purchase tarps, plastic sheating, rope, and tape.
  • Identify electric and water shut off and gas shut offs.

Exterior of House:
As the Hurricane Nears

  • Drain the pool a minimum of four inches below water line tile and before the power outage.
  • Remove and temporarily store pool child fence
  • Charge batteries and locate extension cords.
  • Remove any and all items stored outside (i.e. furniture, equipment, planters, banners, hanging chimes, flags, benches, etc).
  • Secure anything you can’t lift.
  • Protect pool pump, with plywood or cardboard.

Interior of House:
Before Hurricane Season Starts:

  • Purchase television, radio’s, fans, and dvd player that use batteries.
  • Purchase batteries for items above.
  • Purchase a basic telephone – which does not require electricity to operate.
  • Purchase an excess amount of candles, flashlights, and batteries.
  • Purchase and store safely a first aide kit.
  • Purchase lighters and matches – keep them in a plastic bag or plastic film container.
  • Purchase bottled water – 1gallon per day per person – have two week supply.
  • Purchase Tools: hammers, screwdrivers, chisels, nails, screws, pliers, drill, knife, hand saw, duct tape and masking tape.
  • Purchase flashlights or lanterns for each member of family with extra batteries.
  • Purchase a fire extinguisher – and keep charged.
  • Purchase oven mitts.


  • Fill up gas in all cars.
  • Secure advanced hotel reservations, and see if they allow pets.
  • Get Cash $1,500.00 – $2,500.00
  • Locate valuable and important items, consolidate, place in water proof container, and place off of ground to a higher elevation.
  • Fill childrens and adults prescriptions.
  • Video entire house inside and outside, including belongings – while videoing state name of product, age of product, and how much the product costs. – Make two copies of the video tape, then store video recorder and tapes safely. One tape could be stored off-site.
  • Purchase formula, baby food, wipes, and ready to eat food.
  • Purchase a bottle and can opener.
  • Purchase ice and adult ready to eat food.
  • Purchase ample supply of toiletries and store in high ground.
  • Purchase mosquito repellent, whistle, and air horn.
  • Purchase safety razor blades
  • Purchase pet food – at least a two week supply.
  • Make sure your pet is wearing it’s tags and has a favorite blanket or towel.
  • Review escape routes out from the house.
  • Separate/Pack extra clothing and underwear.
  • Purchase disposable eating utensils
  • Purchase needle and thread.

All of these items above may not be required for your particular circumstance, but it can be used as a valuable resource when thinking about what may be needed when hurricane season approaches next year.

Important Documents and Tips:

  • Documents: drivers license, birth certificates, passports, visas, social security cards, voter id, green cards, insurance policies, homeowners, flood, life, medical, boat, plane, auto and property insurance, bank account records, investment records, bills, credit card statements, income tax records, trusts, wills, titles deeds, mortgages, photographs not replacable, heirlooms, list of items kept in safe deposit box, notify other people of where items are left, in case you are not available when its needed.
  • Favorite children books, toothbrush and paste, paper and pencils, crayons, books, band-aides, sterilizers, tweezers, soap, antiseptic spray, hydrogen peroxide, thermometer, petroleum jelly, latex gloves, aspirin, antacid tablets, acetaminophine, ointments for burns.
  • Tip: Talk to your children early about the impending storm, it allays their fears. Use common sense to discuss it with them. Discuss what you are going to do about it and how they can help you. Make sure your children know what to do if they get separated from their family. It is important to let your children be part of the process. Allow them to select food choices, etc. Also, allow them to pack away their things as well.
  • Tip: Tell stories with children that require participation – like clapping or singing, also ask them if they would like to tell their own story.

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