As someone whose parents live in hurricane country and who has sat through a couple of hurricanes of her own, I’m here to tell you, if Hurricane Alex is heading in your direction, prepare for it. According to current scientists’ computer models, Hurricane Alex is moving into the Gulf of Mexico, has already been upgraded to a tropical storm and is likely to become a hurricane. While it looks like it’s more likely to hit Mexico than much of the coast of the US, hurricanes are unpredictable so make sure you’re properly prepared if you’re anywhere near where Hurricane Alex might hit.
Buy an Electric Generator – During their first experience with a hurricane, my parents didn’t have an electric generator. Consequently, when the hurricane hit and the electricity went off, there was no hot water, no cups of coffee, no TV, no computer, no lights – nothing, until the electricity was restored three days later. For their next hurricane, my dad bought a generator. Now, whenever there’s a hurricane, they’re guaranteed hot drinks, hot water for a quick shower, minimal lights, they can operate a portable TV and radio, and get onto the computer to find out what’s going on. The phone works correctly too.
Electric generators are only a few hundred dollars but, if you live in hurricane country, a generator could be the best thing you ever buy.
Buy Food and Water – To prepare properly for Hurricane Alex, stock up on food and water. Don’t get stupid and buy out half the grocery store, as you only need to have food and water for two to three days, but make sure you have food you can eat that doesn’t need to be cooked and also food that won’t easily spoil. (Remember, hurricanes often cause a disruption in electricity for several days). As for water, if anything happens during Hurricane Alex where water supplies are contaminated making water unsafe to drink, having a few bottles of water on hand can mean the difference between being able to have a cup of tea or going thirsty.
Have Medical Supplies On Hand – Just in case anyone gets injured if Hurricane Alex hits and hits badly, stock up on medical supplies you don’t already have in the house. Bandages, band-aids, rubbing alcohol, cold packs and latex gloves. That way, if anyone gets injured, you can offer basic medical help until the real help gets there.
Trim Branches of Trees On Your Property – If you live on property that has lots of trees, trim back the branches of those overhanging the house or cars, and tie back branches that may hit the house during Hurricane Alex. Much of the damage from hurricanes like Hurricane Alex is done by trees falling on houses, cars, boats and other property. The further away your high-end property is from trees or weakened branches, the better.
Board Up Your House – If Hurricane Alex is heading your way, buy plywood boards and board up your house. Some people recommend getting permanent wooden shutters put on houses, but others have low success with that as shutters can be ripped off during the high winds of a hurricane. My father always buys plywood boards and boards up every window and glass door in the house before the hurricane hits. Sure, it takes a few hours, and more hours to take them down after the hurricane passes, but you can be seriously injured from flying glass during a hurricane and your house can be blown apart.
Before you put the boards across your doors and windows, pre-drill a hole for each screw (one hole every 12-18 inches). That way, it’s faster to get them up and screwed in properly before the hurricane hits. Do this in advance, instead of starting to board up when Hurricane Alex is just down the street.
Get Flood Insurance – If you don’t have flood insurance and you’re in a hurricane area, get it. It won’t protect you from flooding from Hurricane Alex (the policy doesn’t take effect for 30 days) but it will protect you from any more hurricanes that may develop as hurricane season continues.
The main thing with preparing for hurricanes like Hurricane Alex is to prepare well in advance and prepare properly. However, if you are told by local or national authorities that it’s too dangerous to stay in your home during Hurricane Alex or any other hurricane, leave. Don’t do what some people in every hurricane do – stay. Staying not only puts your life and your family’s life in danger, but also the lives of those who have to come and rescue you.