After Hurricane Harvey wreaked havoc on Houston last month, the US saw the dramatic effect that hurricanes can have – both the initial wind then rain and the floods that follow. Now, not even two weeks after Hurricane Harvey hit Texas, the threat of Hurricane Irma hitting Florida and the East coast is growing. Although it is too soon to know the true path of the catastrophic storm, because of the potential impact it may have homeowners should have a plan in place now.
Although most North Carolina residents don’t live on the coast, we are still at risk of severe impact from Hurricane Irma. After the impact of Hurricane Matthew, Fayetteville residents are aware of the devastation and destruction that hurricanes can bring. More than half of all hurricane deaths are caused by flooding, and the majority of those occur while people are in their cars. Keep yourself and your family safe by being prepared for the worst.
Ways to Prepare Your Home
In the Triangle we are most at risk for wind and flood damage. Although you can’t totally prevent the impact of the storm, there are steps you can take to reduce your risk of damage. Here are a few ways to prepare your North Carolina home for hurricanes:
- Trim damaged trees or branches so they’re less likely to fall during the storm
- Secure all gutters and downspouts and clear them out to prevent home flooding
- Cover your air conditioning unit so debris does not damage it
- Bring your lawn furniture inside
Although most homeowners in North Carolina won’t have to evacuate when hurricanes hit the coast, we should still be prepared for loss of power and accessibility to general needs like food and water. Don’t wait to begin gathering these items until the storm is already on it’s way. It’s a good idea to have these items on hand throughout the entire hurricane season, June through November.
- Enough water for three to seven days
- Enough food for three to seven days
- Nonperishable packaged or canned food and juices are best!
- Paper plates and plastic utensils
- Pet care items
- Important documents (birth certificates, Social Security card, etc.) in a waterproof container
- First-aid kit, medicines and prescription drugs
- Toiletries, hygiene items and moisture wipes
- Flashlight and batteries
- Cash (with some small bills)
- A full tank of gas
Keep Your Home and Family Safe
It’s important to know that standard homeowners insurance does not cover flood damage from a hurricane. Talk to your local agent about what’s protected under your current policy and how you can better be prepared for unforeseen natural disasters. As the storm develops, following North Carolina hurricane preparedness checklists can help you be one step ahead!