September Is National Preparedness Month

— Written By Trudy Pickett and last updated by

September is National Preparedness Month
The Atlantic Hurricane season began on June 1 and ends on November 30. Read ahead and plan to be prepared this year!

Long before an emergency strikes, be sure make a list of your property. A full list of personal items will help get insurance settlements and/or tax deductions for losses. Insurance agents can give you inventory checklists. Be sure to take pictures and describe the items on your list. Put these and other key insurance papers in waterproof containers or in your safety deposit box.

Look over your insurance policies and coverage to make sure you have covered what needs to be covered. Separate policies are needed for protection against wind and flood damage.

Is your home subject to flooding? Your local building inspection department has copies of the Flood Insurance Rate Maps that show property subject to a 100-year storm frequency.

If a storm threatens your area follow these important tips:

Gather important paperwork, including copies of insurance policies, medical records, prescriptions, etc. Bring copies with you if you need to leave your home.

If severe storms are coming, protect your property by covering windows with storm shutters, siding or plywood. Move vehicles into garages if you can, or park them near your home and away from trees.

Bring bulky or heavy objects such as lawn furniture, grills, garbage cans, tools, potted plants, etc. inside. Loose objects can become missiles. Tie down anything you cannot bring indoors.

Fill bathtubs, sinks and jugs with clean water in case regular supplies are dirty or not clean. Clean these containers by first rinsing them with bleach.

Put sandbags or other protection in place, based on predicted flood depths. Keep sandbags away from the outside walls of your house to prevent floodwaters from reaching your house.

Move valuable papers, jewelry and other contents to upper floors or higher levels to keep them from floodwater.

If time permits, turn off services at the main power switch and close the main gas valve. In case of flooding, do not touch any electrical equipment. Only touch it if in a dry area or you are standing on a dry piece of wood while wearing rubber-soled shoes or boots and rubber gloves.

If you’re caught in the house by suddenly rising waters, move to the second floor or the roof. Take warm clothing, food and water, a flashlight and portable radio with you. Call 9-1-1 and wait for help. Next week: After The Storm.


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