Hurricanes bring many possibilities into the minds of people. There are feelings of awe to panic. And the people who live within the cone of probability their focus is more of uncertainty. Have I prepared for the worst outcome possible?
If you are a paddler, backpacker, outdoors-man/woman then you probably are more prepared for a hurricane disaster. When a hurricane knocks down your door it becomes apparent that one thing will keep you alive. It is CALM. Panic kills in every emergency. And outdoor people are better-suited and prepared for natural emergencies. Being calm is one part and the other part to the survival plan is gear.
The gear you would take into the outdoors is almost identical to survive after a hurricane makes you homeless. It could take weeks before electricity and clean water are available after a direct hit from a hurricane.
FOOD – at least enough for 7 to 14 days
- Non-perishable packaged or canned food / juices
- Foods for infants or the elderly
- Snack foods
- Non-electric can opener
- Water – at least 1 gallon daily per person for 7 to 14 days
- Medicines / Prescription Drugs / First Aid Kit
- Cooking tools / fuel
- Paper plates / plastic utensils
- Clothing – seasonal / rain gear/ sturdy shoes
- Blankets / Pillows / sleeping bag, et cetera
- Tools – keep a set with you during the storm and in your vehicle
- Vehicle fuel tank filled days before the hurricane hits. You can not get gas if there is no electricity.
- Chainsaw with fuel, and or handsaw
- Give a plan on where you are traveling to to friends and family
- Hand sanitizer
- Water purifier
- Toiletries / personals / wipes
- Extra diapers
- Flashlight / Batteries / hand crank flashlight
- Radio – Battery operated / hand crank / NOAA weather radio
- Telephones – Fully charged cell phone with extra battery and a traditional (not cordless) telephone set to be used in the home. And texting works better when cell phone circuits are busy.
- Cash (w/ small bills) Credit Cards and ATMs do not work without electricity
- Lock down your boats and other things in your yard that could go flying
- Cover you home windows with plywood or hurricane shutters
- After the hurricane passes lookout for downed power-lines, broken glass, shards of metal, waterborne pathogens, et cetera. Don’t risk injury, infection, or illness.
- Toys, Books, and Games
- Important documents – insurance, medical records, bank account numbers, Social Security card, et cetera, in a waterproof container or watertight plastic bag
REMEMBER PETS not all shelters are pet friendly!
- Pet care items
- Have proper identification / immunization records / medications of each pet
- Have ample supply of food and water
- Pet carrier or cage
- Muzzle and leash
Remember stay calm, listen to the weather reports, prepare for the worst, get out of the area if you are told to go. Your stuff can always be replaced. And if you do decide to go boating, kayaking, surfing, during the hurricane surf warnings, think first. Is the water worth the risk?
During hurricane season Sean sometimes has professional surfer friends fly in from California and Hawaii. I have also been known to go paddling with a few select friends to hone our skills. Sometimes when we get to the water, and after calculating the current, tide, wind, and surf conditions, we look at each other then the water and say “not today”.
Remember one thing if you choose to ignore small craft advisory warnings and are on the water. If you have an accident you are not only putting yourself at risk. You could also be risking the lives of the people who come to rescue you when the powers of nature surpass your skills. – Jeff