Friday, June 6, 2014

Preparing for a Natural Disaster Part II

Here in the United States, we are subjected to just about every natural disaster out there. Hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, mudslides, ice storms, etc. You name it, and we deal with it. It's important to know and understand how to respond to the disasters that are prone to your specific area.

Where I live, we deal with tornadoes and freezing temperatures. Here, I have included a list of things to do to ensure that no matter the type of weather related disaster, you will be prepared.


Back during my Navy days, I lived on the East Coast. Flooding was a real concern every time there would be a hurricane. We were lucky, though, in that while we lived there, no major flooding affected us. The most flooding that we had was only enough to become a nuisance while driving, not enough to destroy homes and displace families. I wish I knew then what I know now:

  • Make an evacuation plan. Ask friends or relatives who live outside of the flood plain if you could rely on them for shelter if you need to leave your home. If you don't have anyone close enough, do your research on the hotels that will be far enough to be safe. The last thing you want to walk into when you've just evacuated your home is a $300 a night roach infested stink-hole.
  • If you have a basement, make sure it's reinforced. Install a sump pump if flooding is frequent.
  • Discuss with your children that they should never walk through moving water. Children fall easily enough when conditions are good, but it's exponentially more dangerous in a flooding situation. Better yet, teach your children to swim.


June 1st was the start of hurricane season. Hurricanes have been in the news a lot in the past few years. Hurricane Katrina is still pretty fresh in everyone's minds, but there have been other devastating ones along the coast. I think that by now, everyone is not only aware of the benefits being prepared in the event of a hurricane, but the long lasting effects that one can have on a home, community, and our country as a whole.

  • During hurricane season, stay aware and be sure to check your local weather listings.
  • Find out where the emergency shelters in your area are. Ensure that every member of your family is aware also.
  • When a hurricane is headed to your area, install covers over your windows. You can also purchase straps that will help to hold down your roof and lessen any damage. Bring in outdoor furniture, decorations, and anything not securely grounded.
  • As with flooding, have an evacuation plan. Consider very seriously before deciding to stay in your home.

Ice Storm

This past winter, ice storms surprised residents in many of the southern states - usually warmer parts of the country.  It really underscored just how unprepared people in that part of the country are for extreme weather. Hopefully, the next storm will not catch everyone so off-guard.

  • Don't drive unless you have absolutely no choice. Even if you are comfortable driving on slippery roads or snow, like many Northerners are, the greater danger is other drivers.
  • Have a backup to your usual heat source. If the electricity goes out for a day or more, temperatures in your home could drop to dangerous levels. Whether you have a generator, fireplace, or even an emergency stove, a heat source is paramount.
  • Get an ice scrapper and include it in your emergency car kit. Even if you don't think you will ever need it, you never know when an emergency will occur and you will have to drive during adverse conditions.
These lists are not all inclusive. They are a good place to start with, though. In every case, it's best to be prepared and have the emergency supplies you will need, when you need them. For more information on what you can do in an emergency, check out

If you missed Part I of this discussion, be sure to go back and check out the good information!


  1. Thank you for the reminders from these tips. We have ice storms occassionally in Southeast Wisconsin. I can tell you that even experienced northern drivers feel helpless on black ice. On top of that, think about your windshield glazing over from the freezing rain coming down. My daughter and her family live in central Ohio and they have less snow days than they do ice days. It always helps to be prepared for weather that may only happen infrequently where you live.

  2. You are so thoughtful to post this list of to do's in the case of Natural Disasters ..Many people panic and they can't think radically! Everyone should make a copy of this post and put it somewhere handy and easy to remember!.Thankyou for your thoughtfulness!! Have a Great Day!

  3. Great info to know! We have the craziest mix of weather here in Alabama!

  4. I agree that teaching your kids to swim is a very good thing, but you still need to teach them not to go into rushing waters.

    slehan at juno dot com

  5. Tornado's really scare me. We had a small one on the coast in Oregon right near our house. We usually don't get them. I don't live in Tornado alley though. That would scare me. We have earthquakes and ice and wind storms. Great tips to be prepared for sure!! Rita Spratlen

  6. Wonderful and helpful information. Thanks for taking the time to post!

  7. Love your blogs, very informative!