While hurricane season does not officially begin for a couple of months, it’s never too early to make plans for a tropical storm landfall. Torrential rains, subsequent flooding and serious wind damage are common even with category one storms, but of the greatest challenges can be the achievement of an uninterrupted power supply. Without electricity, your world will basically stop. Besides a dark and lifeless home, a hurricane can cause other serious property damage, but savvy inhabitants of coastline areas have developed ways to brunt the force of the storm.
Hurricane forecasting is much more sophisticated than ever. Computer forecasting models can predict a storm even up to 10 days before it makes landfall. True, the exact area of first landfall is difficult to pinpoint early, but a wide swath of coastal residents will be given ample warnings of impending problems.
Board it Up
If your area is placed under a hurricane watch, you should immediately go to your big box retail home center and purchase enough plywood to cover your windows. Water driven through broken windows is a huge cause of hurricane damage and if your insurance policy doesn’t cover flooding, your carrier may have a way to deny payment. Cover all windows securely as soon as the threat of a hurricane is apparent.
Tie Everything Down
Even 40 mile per hour winds can cause trouble. 75 mile per hour hurricane force winds can tear sheds off the ground and hurl garbage cans and bicycles like missiles. Put all loose furniture and small outside items in the garage and tie everything else down.
Put Gas in the Car
Gas pumps need an uninterrupted power supply to operate. Even when the sun is out and the winds have calmed down, there may be no power. Those who have been negligent may have no fuel and therefore no transportation for quite a while.
Get a Generator
A simple generator the size of a lawnmower can power a couple of appliances and keep the lights on. Remember, these units need fuel to operate, so make sure that you have enough gas. If you can afford it, a whole house generator is a great option. If the power goes out, your generator will come on, and if you have sized it correctly, you will have the luxury of an uninterrupted power supply.
Coastline living can be great. The temperature is usually mild and the winter season is short. Hurricanes do pose a risk, however, but with proper planning you can survive the storm and have an uninterrupted power supply.
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Jake Alexander is a free lane writer who likes to blog about natrual disasters and ways to prepare for them. Follow him @JakeAlexander17.