Atlantic Hurricane season starts in June. As a Floridian and Amateur Radio Operator, I like to start preparing for the season a little early. Most areas are prone to some type of natural disaster and there is a lot of similarities in preparing.
One of the most important things is to have important documents in one location protected from water and fire. There are many options out there too, for fire and water protection that range from a lock box to resealable sleeves that keep water out. Even a big resealable food bag is good to protect against water. The most important thing is to get them in one known location for easy access if you need to leave quick.
Make digital backups of all photos and documents. These can be stored online in the cloud. It is also a good idea make a couple copies on usb drives. Put one of them with your important documents and another with a trusted friend or family member. You can never have to many backups.
Research the specific dangers in your area. Most cities and counties have a website and information about what type of dangers you are prone to in your area. The local news websites often have a lot of good resources for your area. Many times you can find maps of evacuation routes, flood areas and other useful information. Another good resource is the old timers in your area.
Make sure you have at least 3 days of non perishable food and water. Canned goods are easy to store but make sure you get a good variety. It is also a good idea to get food that you like to eat. You don’t want to survive 3 days on just sardines. Keep plenty of water and supplies to sanitize water. Check out my post on emergency water for more information on disinfecting water. KM4NMP Emergency Water
The last part of disaster preparedness we will discuss today is making an evacuation plan. Decide where you are going to evacuate and have backup locations. Get a map or atlas, and markup your main and backup routes. Do not rely on your phone or GPS. These are great tools but the systems can go down. Every year check if your map needs updating and revise routes.
There are many parts to disaster preparedness and over the next few weeks we will be going over many ways to prepare. It is never to early to get ready, so start now and stay safe!