(RNN) - You may have the luxury of seeing a hurricane coming, but that doesn't mean you can wait until it arrives to prepare. Planning for a hurricane days before it arrives will keep you and your family safe.
According to ready.gov, the first things you should do are build an emergency kit, make a family communications plan and know your evacuation routes.
Some people choose to weather hurricanes and tropical storms at home, but if you change your mind or are forcibly evacuated, you need to know your evacuation plan. Included in it should be where to go, where to take shelter and when to leave so you don't get stuck in traffic or the storm itself while on the road.
Know where higher ground is located in case of flooding, which is a major risk with tropical storms and hurricanes, and know if your home is prone to flooding or is in a low-lying area.
Ready.gov advises there are a few simple things you can do around your home to prevent damage:
Cover all of your home's windows, either with storm shutters or 5/8" marine plywood, cut to fit and ready to install. Tape will not prevent your windows from breaking.
Install straps or additional clips to securely fasten your roof to the frame of your home.
Reinforce your garage doors.
Anything outside that is not tied down should be brought inside.
Unclog or clear all outdoor drains, rain gutters and downspouts.
Secure your home.
Lastly, you should check your insurance and make sure you have flood coverage. The days before a hurricane is too late, so you should prepare your insurance well ahead of time. Once a year, look over your insurance policies and make sure all of your important documents, such as passports or birth certificates, are in a waterproof container within easy reach of your emergency and evacuation kit.
Copyright 2012 Raycom News Network. All rights reserved.
Monday, August 11 2014 10:19 PM EDT2014-08-12 02:19:42 GMT
The storm-beaten seaside communities on Hawaii's Big Island are fighting to restore electricity and running water - and likely deciding who will hold the state's U.S. Senate seat.More >>
Robert Gavel was too busy Monday helping a crew repair a home savaged by Tropical Storm Iselle to consider that his hard-hit community on Hawaii's Big Island would likely decide who would become the state's next...More >>
Sunday, August 10 2014 7:56 PM EDT2014-08-10 23:56:44 GMT
His generator whirring at top speed, Gene Lamkin used rain captured from Tropical Storm Iselle to wash his hair as he and thousands of others in a rural swath of the Big Island remained in the dark and unable to...More >>
Sunshine and blue skies returned to parts of Hawaii on Sunday after days of heavy rain and gusting winds brought by Tropical Storm Iselle, the first to make landfall in more than two decades. A second storm in the Pacific,...More >>
Sunday, August 10 2014 2:37 AM EDT2014-08-10 06:37:23 GMT
The one-two hurricane punch that was supposed to hit Hawaii is looking more like a jab and a missed left hook.More >>
His generator whirring at top speed, Gene Lamkin used rain captured from Tropical Storm Iselle to wash his hair as he and thousands of others in a rural swath of the Big Island remained in the dark and unable to traverse...More >>
Saturday, August 9 2014 1:35 AM EDT2014-08-09 05:35:32 GMT
Hawaii election officials were scrambling Friday to set up polling stations ahead of the state's primary election, which officials determined will go ahead as planned despite rain and winds from Tropical Storm...More >>
Hawaii election officials were scrambling Friday to set up polling stations ahead of the state's primary election, which officials determined will go ahead as planned despite rain and winds from Tropical Storm Iselle...More >>
Friday, August 8 2014 11:36 PM EDT2014-08-09 03:36:16 GMT
The National Weather Service has downgraded Iselle to a tropical storm.More >>
As the first tropical storm to hit Hawaii in 22 years passed by the islands, some coffee farmers on the Big Island navigated flooded roads to assess damage to their crops Friday while residents and tourists wandered the...More >>
Friday, August 8 2014 4:25 AM EDT2014-08-08 08:25:25 GMT
Iselle was supposed to weaken as it slowly trudged west across the Pacific. It didn't - and now Hawaii is poised to take its first direct hurricane hit in 22 years.More >>
Barely holding on to hurricane strength, Iselle's outer edges brought rain and wind to Hawaii on Thursday as it approached landfall, poised to become the first hurricane or tropical storm to hit the island chain in 22...More >>