Whether you live in a hurricane prone area or you are visiting/on vacation when a storm hits, it’s always safe to be prepared then suffer the consequences if not. In light of Hurricane Irma we urge guests and homeowners to be prepared if leaving your rental home/ home is not an option. We wanted to share a few great tips and things to remember in case the Bradenton-Sarasota area suffers damage from the Hurricane Irma heading towards Florida or for any future storm.
Top Hurricane Preparation Tips:
1. For a big storm like Irma, you need enough water to drink for 7 days. Remember water does NOT have to be bottled. Simply buy water containers and fill them with tap water and store.
2. Get a plastic sheet to line the tub. You can then fill your tub with water without it leaking out. You can use this to flush the toilet and for basic cleaning if the water goes out.
3. Have enough food on hand to eat for 7 days. Packaged food and canned food is good in case the electric goes out and you are unable to use a stove.
4. Buy a large number of Ziploc plastic bags, large and small. You can use them to protect papers and other valuables. Also, fill them 3/4 full of water and stuff the freezer full. Do that by midweek to be sure they are frozen when/if the power goes out it will keep the refrigerator colder. Do NOT set your fridge on the lowest setting.
5. Get a portable radio that receives AM and FM. NOAA radio is good, but doesn’t get you information on evacuations and other instructions. Also, remember to stock up on batteries.
6. Make sure you have LED flashlights and/or lanterns to use in case the electric goes out.
7. Get large plastic boxes. You can put your valuables, photos, and papers in plastic bags inside the boxes, they will likely be okay.
8. Get plastic sheeting and plenty of duct tape.
9. Start running your ice makers now and bagging the ice in freezer bags. Be sure to fill as much space in between your freezer items as you can.
10. Freeze regular tap water for pets, cleaning or drinking in tupperware-type containers or water bottles. REMEMBER to leave a small bit of space between the top of the water & the lids so the ice expands but doesn’t crack the container.
11. Start using up your perishables to make more room for ice in the freezer.
12. Fill up all vehicles with gas and check tires and oil.
13. Have cash on hand, at least enough to get you through tolls and gas out of town if need be. Also, call your bank if you plan on leaving the state so they don’t freeze your card for out-of-area “suspicious” transactions.
14. Screen shot all important documents and send them to your email. You may take originals in sealed bags or plastic bins.
15. Stock pet and livestock food and supplies. Also, remember vet records in case you need to shelter at a storm-safe facility.
16. Map out evacuation plans and share with family members so they know where you’re headed. Guests, if you are unsure where the nearest evacuation center is, reach out to your rental company for more information.
17. Secure all firearms and ammunition properly.
18. Grab old towels and beach towels to put on your windowsills. Even with the best windows and shutters, water seeping from the wind pressure happens. A few damp towels is better than soaked drywall or floors!
19. Shutter windows and doors and bring everything outside into your garage or house. Do not wait until the day before. Better to get done early and relax than wait until it’s too late.
20. If you don’t already have your hurricane supplies, you might want to get them sooner than later. Most places sell out of the essentials fast.