What should property owners, business owners and renters be doing now at the start of hurricane season? Tropical Storm Andrea’s affects on Virginia are a great reminder to:
- Consider getting flood insurance. Most homeowners insurance does not cover flood damage. Inland flooding is often a problem in Virginia, so a direct hit from a hurricane isn’t necessary for there to be extensive damage. Get free info at www.floodsmart.gov or call 1-888-379-9531. Talk to your insurance agent now. Coverage usually takes 30 days before it goes into effect.
- Install permanent storm shutters. These are the best protection for windows; tape doesn’t prevent windows from breaking. Another option is to cover windows with 5/8” plywood.
- Be sure trees and shrubs around your property are well trimmed.
- Clear loose and clogged rain gutters and downspouts.
- Get a portable battery-powered/hand crank radio with NOAA weather band so you can hear information even when the power is out. Have plenty of batteries on hand.
- Store drinking water. Have at least a three-day supply: one gallon per person per day.
- Families should have an emergency plan. Print out a plan or fill in your plan at www.ReadyVirginia.gov.
- Download the new Ready Virginia app. The free app for iPhone® and Android™ devices provides emergency planning and guidance.
- Businesses should take steps to prepare for hurricane season. Visit www.vaemergency.gov/ready-virginia/business for planning resources.
What should residents do if a tropical storm warning is issued?
- If power is out, listen to a battery-powered/hand-crank radio for instructions from local officials.
- Those in mobile homes should check tie downs and go to a sturdier building for shelter.
- Keep a supply of flashlights and extra batteries. Don’t use open flames such as kerosene lamps and candles for light.
- Be sure you have at least a three-day supply of food that doesn’t need refrigeration or electricity for preparation.
- Store personal papers in a waterproof container on the highest level of your home.
- Stay inside, away from windows, skylights and glass doors.
- If power goes off, turn off major appliances to reduce power “surge” when electricity is back on.
Prepared by the Virginia Department of Emergency Management, June 2013
(804) 897-6510 email@example.com www.ReadyVirginia.gov