10 Essential Items For Your Hurricane Kit
Plan ahead to make the aftermath easier
Every year in Florida we prepare a hurricane kit. June 1st is the start of hurricane season, so it’s best to have your kit assembled and ready by then. There are many other things that have to be done if a storm is imminent; this kit is just the yearly preparation for “just in case.” I refresh my kit every year to make sure all items are in usable condition and not close to expiration dates and keep all items together in a large waterproof tub.
2. Hurricane lamps, oil and wicks
3. Flashlights and battery operated lanterns
The top three cover any artificial lighting needed during and after a storm. Candles and hurricane lamps are good but they do require vigilance when using - they can be a fire hazard and should be used sparingly and under close supervision. We found battery operated lanterns were the most convenient to have around after a hurricane, because of their hands free operation.
4. Battery operated radio and a weather radio
Weather radios are great during a storm to keep you informed of any dangerous weather yet to come. After a storm a regular radio can keep you advised of any places open that are offering help, shelter, ice, or other needed supplies.
Stock up on more than enough batteries to power flashlights, lanterns, radios, and any games that might keep the kids entertained during power outages. You need enough to cover several days of use. Keep in mind that after a storm they are one of the hardest things to find if you run out.
6. A regular telephone
Our phone service was still operational after the hurricanes; we just had to hook up a regular phone to the line, since cordless phones require electricity to operate. Cell phones are only good for as long as they stay charged and after a storm emergency personnel usually ask that you not use them unless needed so the cell towers don't get jammed and block emergency communications.
7. Hand can opener
Stocking up on canned foods is only good if you can open them.
8. First aid kit
You can purchase one or put one together yourself. Good basic items to include are bandages, medical tape, antibiotic ointment, tweezers, scissors and gauze.
9. Bug spray
After the hurricanes here, the mosquitoes were out in force, so bug spray was a necessity.
10. Moist wipes and hand sanitizer
Clean water may not be available after a storm, and you want to keep your bottled water for drinking.
Again, once a storm is forecast there are many more preparations necessary, but with this kit prepared and ready ahead of time you’ll have the basics covered.