Do You Have A Hurricane Preparedness Plan?
If it becomes necessary to evacuate, plan for it ahead of time. Talk it over and make decisions so everyone is on the same page. Preparation can save lives and reduce the amount of time it takes to get your family to safety and eventually back home.
Where you'll go. Decide ahead of time where you'll go when you evacuate, taking into consideration people may be coming from work, school, or other locations. If you have children in school, find out where they will be sent when an evacuation is announced. Update this plan every year or as schools or careers change.
Who you'll contact. Designate someone outside the area to contact in the event you are separated from your family, or if your electricity is not working in your home. Should the situation be grave enough where your family can't evacuate together, have everyone call the contact person to say they are safe.
Where you'll meet. Agree on a meeting point for the family if you're separated during a disaster.
Evacuation Routes Plan several evacuation routes from your area that are not low-lying, and test them often for efficiency. In the event of a flash flood you won't be able to evacuate, but you must seek higher ground. In areas where there is extreme heat, identify places to avoid exposure like malls, movie theaters or a friend's home.
While an evacuation plan is probably the most important part of hurricane preparedness, there are some other steps you can take to make coming home a little easier. Having a "go-bag" of medication, clothes, and non-perishable human and pet food is one good step. And anyone would tell you that having an emergency fund is always a good idea - but one often-overlooked (and free!) step is reviewing your insurance policies - do you have coverage for named-storm perils? Oftentimes, the deductibles (what you must pay out of pocket before your insurance plan will pay anything) are different for named storms than they are for other perils. Some policies, particularly in hurricane-prone areas, require special endorsements to even have the coverage for named storms. Do you know how to report a claim if you have one? Having a yearly pre-season check in with your agent is a quick, simple, free way to ensure what you love most is covered, and that you can get back to normal as soon as possible if something were to happen.
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