It’s time to make an evacuation plan.
Hurricane season can be intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be frightening if you have an evacuation plan. In the event that a storm is taking a turn for the worse, or if a mandatory evacuation is declared, you can have the knowledge that you already know what to do and where your family will go. Here are a few tips to form an evacuation plan that works for your family.
Create A “Family Check-In” Group Chat or Text
Before a hurricane approaches, create a group text or chat that will act as a family check-in. When family members are staying in various places, use the group text to make sure everyone is safe, and exchange important updates on location, current and future plans, and any concerns. This will give everyone peace of mind knowing that each member is aware of the whereabouts, status and what’s going on with everyone else.
Establish Meeting Spots
Have a designated local meeting spot that is in close proximity to everyone, such as a store parking lot, library or park. Make sure to also choose a backup location, in case the storm prevents anyone from meeting at the original choice. Then, designate a meeting spot that is farther away, perhaps a couple of towns over. It’s a good idea to make physical copies of this information and ensure each family member has one, in case phone batteries are unable to be charged.
Select Evacuation Routes & Plan Alternates
Look at a map or if you know your area well, decide which roads you will take to leave. Keep in mind that roads will likely be heavily trafficked during an evacuation, whether officials have declared it mandatory or not. Any time a hurricane approaches a risky category, many people will be evacuating and clogging up highways and readily accessible roads. That’s why it’s important to have one or several alternate routes you can take, should traffic be too heavy.
Put Together An Emergency Kit
Include important documents and identification cards, an extra house key and car key, cash, flashlights and batteries, a battery-powered radio, and a few bottles of water. Load your car with emergency supplies like jumper cables, a gas can, blankets, water and snacks, a car phone charger, toilet paper, and road maps. The last thing you want is to be caught with a dead car, in an unknown town, with no supplies.
Review Your Insurance Coverage
Take time now to go over your home and auto insurance policies with your insurance agent. Be sure that you understand exactly what is covered, and what is not covered. Discuss flooding and windstorm coverage, other concerns you have regarding hurricanes and what additional policies, if any, you should consider taking out to meet your needs. Your insurance agent is happy to help you ensure that you and your family’s assets are protected.
Don’t wait until a big storm is on the way to make your evacuation preparations. Start today and rest assured you and your family are ready to face this hurricane season with confidence!