Do You Have Your Hurricane Kit Prepared?
While hurricane season graces Florida from June 1st to November 30th, August, September, and October tend to be the most active months. And this year, some experts are predicting that Florida may have an above-average year in terms of hurricanes. After all, it’s been awhile since Florida was directly hit by a Category 3 storm or higher. More than ten years to be exact. This year may end our “dry spell”, and while we hope the streak continues, it is important to be prepared. So what exactly should the average family have in their hurricane preparedness kit?
Gathering Your Hurricane & Tropical Storm Supplies
Before the start of hurricane season (or right now, if you haven’t gathered your supplies yet) is a great time to check your supplies and purchase anything missing from your hurricane kit.
HURRICANE PREPAREDNESS KIT FOR WEATHERING THE STORM
- Nonperishable food and water for up to seven days. It is recommended that families have one gallon of water per person per day set aside. Also, if your food is canned, make sure you have a way to open the cans manually. Don’t forget the pets, either!
- Hand-crank or battery-powered radio
- First-aid kit and extra medication. When the storm warning hits, make sure to refill any medications you are running low on so you have a 30 day supply.
- Cash (plan on not having the ATMs and credit consoles working)
- Gasoline. Don’t wait until after the storm hits. Fill the tank beforehand in case you need to evacuate.
HURRICANE PREPAREDNESS KIT FOR EVACUATION
In addition to the kit for weathering the storm, you and your family will need to take with you any important paperwork with you as well as clothes and activities to keep the kids occupied.
- Food and water for seven days.
- Hand-crank or battery-powered radio.
- First-aid kit and extra medication.
- Blankets, pillows, clothing, and any special items (i.e. a stuffed animal your youngest can’t sleep without).
- Pet care items.
- Phone chargers.
- Important paperwork for everyone in the family, including:
- Social Security Cards
- Birth Certificates
- Medical Records
- Insurance Documents
- Bank Account Numbers
- Marriage Certificates
- Stocks and Bonds
- Recent Tax Returns
- Leases, Deeds, and Titles
Is Your House Insured Against Storms?
In addition to your kit, it’s a good idea to check over your rental or homeowner’s insurance to verify that your home or possessions are properly insured. Read over the policy and make sure that you have provided your insurer with all the necessary information they need to have, like an inventory of valuables. If you find that you aren’t covered or haven’t added a valuable to your inventory, speak to your agent as soon as possible. Also, while reading over your agreement, make a special note of anything you may need if you have to file a claim as well as any deadlines for filing and special requirements.
After the Storm: Insurance Claims & Insurance Disputes
After a storm hits, you may find yourself dealing with an insurance company as you try to get compensation for any damages to your home or property. Depending on your coverage, this can be a trial. While some paperwork is always required, sometimes insurance companies are slow to pay out or set up new barriers to receiving payment. If you’re encountering a problem with you insurance company, speaking a Tampa insurance dispute lawyer can help you determine your legal options.
Chances are, you haven’t had to deal with an insurance company too much. After all, once you’re all signed up and paying your premiums, you generally only call if you have a problem. A Tampa insurance dispute lawyer, however, has the specialized knowledge to deal with insurance companies and can help you receive the compensation you deserve. Don’t let an insurer take advantage of you—if your insurance company seems to be playing “hard to get” with your coverage, call a Tampa insurance dispute lawyer.
(Wondering who may grace our shores this year? The National Hurricane Center has a list of names here.)