After an eleven-year hurricane drought, Hurricane Hermine hit Florida, killing two and leaving hundreds of thousands of homes without power. While it weakened and turned into a post-tropical storm, we want to help spread the word about what homeowners or anyone should do soon after a hurricane.
Stay tuned to instructions from local officials. The safest and easiest way to do so is via a smartphone with internet access (a data plan that does not necessarily depend on a Wi-Fi connection, as you may lose power). If you’ve taken alternative shelter, only return home when authorities say it is safe to do so.
Connect with family and friends to let them know you are safe and to see that others are, too. Social media makes this easier than ever, or you can send a text message.
Try to avoid any flood water. Floods can get out of control quickly. There is always a danger you can get swept up in a rush of floodwater, and vehicles can too. You may not be able to tell where the ground is uneven or where there is a potential for you or a vehicle to become stranded in a flood. In addition, walking through floodwater may put you at risk for electric shock. A downed power line could create a dangerous charge.
Protect Your Home
Finally, you should do what you can to protect your home from damage. Take plenty of pictures so that you have something to file with your insurance company. Take any additional steps to protect your home. For example, if the roof is leaking, try to cover it with a tarp, but down buckets to catch dripping, and shut off the water valve for any leaking fixtures or pipes.