Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Better Safe than Sorry: Hurricane Preparedness

I caved LOL I actually went out and did a bit of emergency preparedness.  I went and bought bottled water, as well as some flashlights and extra batteries.  Thanks to my mom and her prepping tendencies, we have loads of food if we need it.  I am not really worried about a storm; I love extreme weather.  The first year I moved to Florida was when I think tropical storm Andrea rolled through.  I remember being at work and wanting to see my first major storm.  I went outside and it was awesome, rain was pouring down, wind was whipping the banners wildly, thunder crashing, I loved it.  Then realized I was locked out of hospital LOL I had to call the floor and ask somebody to come down to let me back in LOL no way was I walking around in the storm to the emergency room to get back in.  I would be soaked within 30 seconds. Thankfully I got back in and since have looked forward to hurricane season here in Jacksonville.  I know they are horribly devastating for some people, but that still does not make them exciting.  OK so I thought I would throw in my own emergency preparedness post.  Mainly to help me get mentally and physically ready, and if somebody else finds a tidbit useful, all the better.
Now there is a difference between a hurricane watch and warning: with a watch hurricane conditions are a threat within 48 hours.  With a warning conditions are expected within 36 hours.  In order to find out the latest information people should listen to NOAA weather radio to hear the latest updates from the National Weather Service.  All windows, doors, and shutters should be secured, as well as anything that could be carried off by the winds fastened down or brought inside. So all those lovely plants and wind chimes I made need to be taken down, or risk being destroyed. I did not know, but totally makes sense, turn the fridge to coldest setting just in case power goes out.  It will help food last a little bit longer.  Fill up your car with gas, thankfully prices aren’t too high right now. Might want to splurge for a future car wash after the storm, and get a few more cents off gas price. Most important: have a personal evacuation plan if needed, and what the cities evacuation route is.  OK that route plan does not make sense to me, it just seems it would be at a standstill in an emergency. Now for supplies, make sure you have clean water, enough for a few days for each member of your family.
  OK no idea where to store all that water LOL mine is filling up the back of my car.  Also have the afore mentioned flashlights with plenty of extra batteries.  Staci has already claimed hers and is having fun with it LOL kids+flashlights=adventure. A first aid kit with extra medications is completely needed. Being a nurse I have a pretty fantastic kit already.  Have a small tool kit to fix minor oops.  Hygiene products: shampoo, soap, toothpaste (get varieties that don’t require water if you can find them) mouthwash is good just in case can’t brush teeth with water.  Make sure all cell phones and iPads are charged up. Get a car charger just in case electricity goes out. Have a current map of your area, most tourist stops will have free ones. Bug spray (on guard for zika virus, et al…) and extra cash.  Remember during and in the immediate afterwards only drive or use cell phone when absolutely necessary.
  Unless you’re an idiot you know not to go near any downed wires, stay very clear of them. Don’t go into any buildings that are surrounded by water, in fact avoid all water unless you know for sure it is not contaminated. No eating, drinking, or bathing in it.  Just stay safe with your family.  Sit back, with a cozy cup of coffee, tea, or cocoa, and enjoy the wonder of the elements.  It will eventually pass.

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