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Are You Prepared For Hurricane Irene?



Hurricane Irene is wreaking havoc on the East Coast, and she’s headed right for New Jersey! Our elected officials aren’t messing around with Irene, and have taken every precaution possible to protect the citizens. Still, we need to make sure that we’re prepared for the storm, and for what might happen afterwards.

With a storm of this magnitude, it’s important to be prepared, as anything is possible. We saw some pretty bad flooding last weekend, and that was just from heavy rain. Flooding, high winds, downed power lines, and worse could happen.

I have family that lives in Florida, and have seen first-hand how disruptive a hurricane can be – No electicity for weeks at a time, water contamination, gas shortages, etc.

As such, I’ve created this hurricane preparedness list for anyone in Irene’s path who may be feeling unprepared:

1. Bottled Water

You don’t realize how dependant on water you are until it’s gone. You’ll need bottled water for drinking and sanitation, so get plenty. Stores sold out? Fill up any containers you have lying around your house with water. And fill your bathtub with water as well, in case your toilets stop working. As a last resort, you can use the water stored in your hot water heater.

2. Flashlights or Battery-Operated Lamps

If you’re without power, you’re going to want some light – Especially at night. Candles work, but if you’ve got a gas leak, you could cause an explosion. Better to be safe than sorry and stick with flashlights or battery-operated lamps.

3. Extra Batteries

You’ll want to be sure to have extra batteries for all battery-operated items in the house. If power is out for an extended period of time, you’ll go through your existing batteries faster than you think.

4. Gas and Cash

Try to fill your car up with gas and get cash from the ATM prior to a storm in case the power goes out and you can’t get access to fuel or money. This may seem a little extreme until you’re sitting in eight-hour gas lines, which are no fun.

5. Bagged Ice and Coolers

If your power goes out, you’ll want to have ice and coolers to keep perishables fresh. This is another item people often stand in line for after a storm.

6. Canned or Non-Perishable Food

Food items such as peanut butter, jelly, and bread that can be eaten without having to be cooked are helpful. Or, if you have a gas grill to cook with, supplies for that. Just make sure you have a good stock pile of stuff to eat. You might also want to consider dry cereal, powdered milk, canned fruits and veggies, canned meat, canned soups, energy bars or other snack bar items.

Remember to grab a handheld can opener to open all this stuff with!

7. A Working Telephone

If you have a land-line phone, make sure you have a corded phone in case the power goes out. If you’ve only got a cell phone, make sure it’s fully charged. Do you have a car charger? That’s a great way to keep your phone charged if you’re without power.

8. Move Your Car To A Safe Place

The garage is the best place, or very close to your home, so it will provide some shielding form the storm. Avoid parking near power lines or trees that might fall.

9. Secure Your Lawn Furniture

It’s better to move lawn chairs, bird feeders, tables, toys, etc inside your house or into your garage to keep them from becoming projectiles. If you can’t do that, tie them town with a strong rope. If you don’t have a rope, a garden hose will work just as well.

10. Magazines, Books, and Newspapers

No electricity, no television, no problem! Pack some reading material in a dry place to fight the inevitable no-power boredom. This will comes in handy especially for kids, whose favorite book may calm their fears during a rumbling storm.

Good luck to everyone in Irene’s path, and stay safe!

Sujeet Patel is the founder of Guys Gab, the definitive men's lifestyle blog, and he's one of the biggest car enthusiast you'll ever meet. He's been fortunate enough to turn his passion for cars into a full-time job. Like they say, "If you love what you do, you'll never work a day in your life."

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