Nature’s Calling Preparing For The Worst
Imagine yourself at home in the living room, relaxing while listening to the news. During the broadcast, you hear one of the anchors say, “The state has officially issued a tornado watch and warns all residents to be prepared in case they have to evacuate.” You glance at the television with a smirk on your face. “They said the same thing last year and nothing happened,” you mumble. A few days go by, and you brush off the announcement.
All of a sudden on your way home from work one day, you witness the clouds getting dark and gloomy, the rain begins coiling around a gust of wind like a snake wrapping its prey, and you notice the wind gradually gaining momentum. Your mouth drops in disbelief as you unknowingly watch a tornado slowly forming right in front of you. You put your foot on the gas pedal, running red lights, stop signs, and swerving around pedestrians in a mad dash to get home and gather all your belongings. That’s when you come to a stop, causing your tires to screech.
You hop out of your vehicle, trying to beat the twister before it changes directions. As you run through the door, you hear the windows shaking uncontrollably, followed by a loud bang from the dishes stored in the cabinets. In a hurry, you grab your clothes and personal belongings, then head back to your vehicle. That’s when you realize that, you have no action plan, no food, no water, and you aren’t sure where to go. You didn’t think this far ahead since the announcement made by broadcasters was brushed off as a false alarm.
The reality is, this one moment can result in a lifetime of misery if you aren’t prepared for a natural disaster.
So before you decide to head to the hardware store to gather supplies, here are some ways you can be prepared for Mother Nature’s calling.
Don’t Wait Until The Last Minute
- Water Flood (Preparing For A Flash-flood)
Like most natural disasters, a flood can affect more people than hurricanes or tornadoes. Within the United States, for example, it’s actually one of the most common form of natural disasters to strike. As a result, according to Law Help, flash-floods cause about 200 deaths annually. To insure your safety during a flood, get to higher ground. Don’t attempt to operate a motor vehicle otherwise you risk the chance of getting stuck, or worse, swept away by fast moving water.
Ways to Make Sure You’re Protected
- If possible, have a sump pump, as well as a backup one that operates on batteries.
- Turn off all utilities at the main power switch and close the main gas valve.
- Seal the basement walls with waterproof compounds.
- Never, walk or swim across swiftly moving water.
- Don’t forget sandbags.
- Hurricane Season
Hurricane claims are some of the most difficult losses for a person in the claims/construction industry to deal with. That being said, anytime a hurricane is approaching the coast, you will more than likely see residents scrambling around to a nearest hardware store buying whatever they can get their hands on. Though this may seem like a good tactic, the reality is if you wait until a hurricane watch has been issued, you’re too late. During a hurricane, homes face the risk of getting damaged and possibly destroyed by high winds and high waves smashing against the foundation. Windows will be shattered and homes can even fall to the ground if they’re built on a weak foundation in extreme storms, like Hurricane Katrina.
Don’t Wait Any Longer
- Make sure your home meets building codes for withstanding hurricanes.
- Remain indoors. Only in the event of a dire emergency, such as a fire, should you decide to venture outside.
- Have a backup plan in case of a power outage. A home generator can keep your home powered-up when the power goes out.
- Lastly, make sure you have a battery-powered radio, so you can keep up with the latest news.
- Twister Alert
Generally speaking, most tornadoes form from thunderstorms. To clarify, when warm, moist air from the Gulf of Mexico combine with cool, dry air from Canada, it creates the perfect ingredients needed to make a tornado. When these two masses meet in the middle, they create instability in the atmosphere. Tornadoes can travel anywhere from 30 to 70 miles per hour. Needless to say, a tornado can destroy any and everything it comes in contact with. Turning everyday household objects into dangerous projectiles that can kill people and damage property.
Tornado Proof Your Home
- Schedule a home inspection to have your house and roof checked.
- Make any repairs necessary in order to ensure your safety.
- Learn the twister history that has struck the area before. That way you know their sizes so you can make sure your shelter is adequate and you plan accordingly.
- Brush Fire
A wildfire or wildland fire is a fire in an area of combustible vegetation that occurs in the countryside or rural area. Although wildfires typically occur in unpopulated areas they can also occur within city limits destroying homes, schools, and whatever else is in their path. If you live in state that’s prone to brush fires such as Arizona, California, or Nevada it’s important to know that climate change may cause more wildfires near you. With that being said, it’s equally important to note that 90% of wildfires are started by humans.
Extinguish the Flames
- Keep your lawn watered and mowed short (three inches or less) around your home and other buildings. A short, green lawn will not carry fire.
- When updating your home, consider using less flammable materials such as brick, stone and metal for roofing and siding.
- Spring cleaning. Clean the roof and gutters of leaves, and other debris each spring. Also remove any tree limbs that could possibly catch fire if one were to happen.
- The Do’s & Don’ts for All Natural Disasters
|● Stock up on food. Prep for two meals a day.
● Don’t forget to purchase lots of water. Aim for about two liters per person.
● Assemble a first-aid kit for cuts and bruises.
● Pack spare clothes in case you’re away from home longer than you expected.
● Sanitize whatever items you use properly.
● Pack extra batteries.
|● Drink water you think might be contaminated.
● Forget to wash your hands as much as possible.
● Hold on to food items that may have come in contact with contaminated water.
● Forget to protect important documents. After all, once they’re gone, they’re gone for good!
● Be selfish. Help those around you.
As a final point, even if a natural disaster isn’t threatening you or your family, it’s still a good idea to stay prepared for whatever comes your way. If you live in areas that are prone to disasters, never second guess leaving your residence if you have to. A home can be replaced, but a life can’t.
Be safe out there!
Thank you again for taking the time to read my article. I would like to know, have you ever experienced a natural disaster before? Or, do you have any tips you’d like to share? I’ll be checking for comments, so feel free to express your thoughts on today’s article.
H.D. loves exploring the outdoors, and being active. If you can’t catch him online, you might be able to catch him at the gym, or cheering on the Denver Broncos. Follow him on Twitter at @Davis241. Thanks!