Hurricane Safety Tips

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We care about more than just your smiles. We care about your family so here are some safety tips for the hurricane season that is upon us.

BEFORE A HURRICANE

  • Have a disaster plan.
  • Have a pet plan. Before a storm threatens, contact your veterinarian or local humane society for information on preparing your pets for an emergency.
  • Board up windows.
  • Make sure you know which county or parish you live in.
  • Know where all the evacuation routes are.
  • Prepare a disaster supplies kit for your home and car. Have enough food and water for at least 3 days. Include a first aid kit, canned food and a can opener, bottled water, battery-operated radio, flashlight, protective clothing and written instructions on how to turn off electricity, gas, and water.
  • Have a NOAA weather radio handy with plenty of batteries, so you can listen to storm advisories.
  • Have some cash handy. Following a hurricane, banks and ATMs may be temporarily closed.Make sure your car is filled with gasoline.
  • Make plans to secure your property:
  • Cover all of your home’s windows. Permanent storm shutters offer the best protection for windows. A second option is to board up windows with 5/8” marine plywood, cut to fit and ready to install. Tape does not prevent windows from breaking.
  • Install straps or additional clips to securely fasten your roof to the frame structure. This will reduce roof damage.
  • Be sure trees and shrubs around your home are well trimmed so they are more wind resistant.
  • Clear loose and clogged rain gutters and downspouts.
  • Reinforce your garage doors; if wind enters a garage it can cause dangerous and expensive structural damage.
  • Plan to bring in all outdoor furniture, decorations, garbage cans and anything else that is not tied down.
  • Determine how and where to secure your boat.
  • Install a generator for emergencies.
  • If in a high-rise building, be prepared to take shelter on or below the 10th floor.
  • Consider building a safe room.

DURING A HURRICANE

  • Stay away from low-lying and flood-prone areas.
  • Always stay indoors during a hurricane, because strong winds will blow things around.
  • Fill buckets with water so you can still flush your toilet
  • Leave mobile homes and to go to a shelter.
  • If your home isn’t on higher ground, go to a shelter.
  • If emergency managers say to evacuate, then do so immediately.

AFTER A HURRICANE

  • Stay indoors until it is safe to come out.
  • Check for injured or trapped people, without putting yourself in danger.
  • Watch out for flooding which can happen after a hurricane.
  • Do not attempt to drive in flooding water.
  • Stay away from standing water. It may be electrically charged from underground or downed power lines.
  • Don’t drink tap water until officials say its safe to do so.

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