Add these 3 essential items to your hurricane prep kit

July 10, 2018

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Posted by in News

There are countless lists floating around the internet to help residents prepare for the possibility of a hurricane. These lists advise stocking basic supplies like water, flashlights and batteries. However, there are a few items that are easy to overlook, yet are crucial when the winds pick up and things go south.

 

Once the power and internet go out or evacuation orders are issued, you will need access to important information that most of us store in our computers, phones or on the cloud. Accessing and printing this information ahead of a storm can make the ordeal much less stressful.

 

  1. Important phone numbers.I don’t know about you, but I’ve only memorized three phone numbers by heart (and one of them is 911). Take a few moments to create a document with phone numbers of:
  • Family and friends (especially those also affected by the storm)
  • Auto and home insurance agent (and claims department)
  • City number for local updates (630-CITY for Jacksonville, 825-1001 for St. Augustine)
  • Local hospital/family doctor
  • Local hotels (in case you cannot stay at home)
  • Work contact (or your boss’s cell number)
  • Landlord number (if you are a renter)
  • Other emergency contacts

Why is this list important when you already have these numbers in your phone? If your battery dies and there is no power, you may need to rely on a kind neighbor’s cell phone or a hotel land line. But neither of those will benefit you without access to phone numbers.

 

      2.Hard-to-replace documents.You can’t take everything that’s important to you, but consider taking documents that are difficult to replace. This may include deeds, wills, birth certificates, passports, important financial statements and so on. If you don’t want to print these, save them to a USB thumb drive and store it in a waterproof bag.

 

Also, keeping a paper copy of your home insurance policy (and flood insurance paperwork) may also be useful if you must undergo a claim.

 

    3. Video of your home’s contents.Take 10 minutes and walk through your home before the storm to video your stuff. No need to worry about producing a high quality video; just ensure your furniture, appliances and important belongings are visible. Save the video to a USB or upload to the cloud for later. This can save some big headaches during the claims process!

 

If you have been through a hurricane, you can understand the desire to return to normal in the first days after a storm. Having access to important information can ease the process and make life much easier. Above all, stay safe!

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