Basic preparations for every season

This will be the place to find all your hurricane prep information. Whether it be preparing your home, family, pets or evacuation plans here is where to find the information you need.

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depotoo
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#21 Postby depotoo » Wed Mar 09, 2005 4:03 pm

that's an excellent idea! it would be great if we could get together a list and have it posted as well. all the do's and don'ts from our past experiences.
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#22 Postby cycloneye » Wed Mar 09, 2005 4:27 pm

depotoo wrote:that's an excellent idea! it would be great if we could get together a list and have it posted as well. all the do's and don'ts from our past experiences.


http://www.fema.gov/areyouready/emergency_planning.shtm

At the link above there are plenty of tips of preparations.
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#23 Postby CharleySurvivor » Thu Mar 10, 2005 7:06 am

Yes! a list would be wonderful.

So many new treads were started last year after the hurricanes and many posted comments/tips which were great ideas... even things I would have never thought of. I wish I would have printed or saved some of that info.
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#24 Postby Persepone » Thu Mar 17, 2005 9:56 pm

rolltide wrote:... If you prepare like you are going on a camping trip to the middle of the woods (as in no campground facilities) you will be much better off. After Ivan we were without power for two weeks and water for 10 days and getting supplies in the aftermath was next to impossible.... Keith


I agree with this idea--as long as you add the "secure the house" activities and supplies as well.

Are you willing to share your "list" for what goes on a camping trip to the middle of the woods? We are "tent" campers and so even in commercial campgrounds we don't have "hookups" usually. The tradeoff is that usually they can squeeze us in somewhere even if they are "full" because we don't need much space and don't need hookups. So our list is probably fairly close except for water/sanitary stuff (although we do own a sunshower, and have improvised other stuff.) I'm curious about water: do you lug it, or carry a filter and purification tablets or boil water or what? I've done all but the filters.

What "tools" would you include that might do double duty on camping trip and hurricane situation?
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#25 Postby Persepone » Thu Mar 17, 2005 10:13 pm

I keep seeing "gas grills" mentioned. Do these become the primary cooking device? I'd think a small camp stove (butane or propane) might be much better for heating up morning coffee, etc. Butane stoves, the kind used at your table in restaurants, are rated for indoor use! Harder to find than propane camp stoves but might be safer if you are tempted to use it indoors. How much fuel do you need for 10 days without power? For the gas grill? For the camp stoves? Can you store it safely?

Don't forget, by the way, that you need a "manual" coffee pot that works on a camp stove, gas grill, etc. unless you have the knack for making "boiled" coffee. My personal one is an old (1950s or 1960s) Faberware stainless steel pot from a tag sale. But Wal-Mart sells inexpensive versions in their camping department. Remember that pots you use on a charcoal or wood fire will get all blackened, so you need something you can clean the carbon off relatively easily afterward. Other pots and pans also need to be able to be used on an open fire safely and without ruining them. Cast iron frying pan, dutch oven (you can bake in it as well as slow cook), but aluminun/stainless steel WITHOUT non-stick coatings are essential.

What are the recipes/grocery lists for hurricanes? I'd be interested in seeing what people cook/prepare on the camp stoves/gas grills, etc. Anyone out there make biscuits in a dutch oven? Corn bread over a wood campfire? Other interesting recipes? I've made brown bread (you boil it in old tin cans--like tomato cans, etc.) when there was no power for extended periods of time. Serve with hot dogs and baked beans... It's easy to make, but costs a lot if you buy it already made in a can.
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#26 Postby Jagno » Thu Mar 17, 2005 11:47 pm

I don't plan on having to do alot of cooking but rather heating when an emergency situation is at hand. I do alot of canning in quart jars as well as dehydrating and keeping lots of canned veggies and fruit as well as juices on hand. I have water, water and more water. I also buy the Borden's milk in a box which my kids love and it has a fairly long shelf life. I can meals that my family eats regularly such as:
Spaghetti Meat Sauce
Chili
Gumbo (seafood, chicken & sausage & Okra)
Pork roast in gravy
Beef roast in gravy
Chicken salad (mayo added when preparing to eat)
Red Beans & Sausage
Fajita Meat (Beef, Chicken, & Seafood)
Sausage in tomatoe gravy
all types of seasoned vegetables

The list is endless but as you can see all that's left to prepare for most meals is either rice or pasta. The main part of the dish is prepared and ready to heat and eat. I don't want to be over a stove or grill of any kind on a miserably hot and humid day following a hurricaine. They are boxed in Rubbermaid totes and have traveled with us during evacuations as well. This was just my way of saying that I don't want to be dependent on an already over-burdened relief system during a catastrophic event.
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#27 Postby sunny » Fri Mar 18, 2005 8:34 am

george_r_1961 wrote:The whole point here is not to wait until a hurricane threatens to make your hurricane plan. Have a family? Well divvy up the pre hurricane prep responsibilites now. Of course the adults will end up doing most of the work such as making sure all family vehicles are gassed up, the home is stocked with water and non perishable foods etc. If evacuation is in order decide now who will be allowed to take what with them since obviously you cant take your whole house unless you live in an RV. In fact the staff here at Storm2k should designate a "Hurricane Planning Day" for all its members. Dont wait for the red and black flags to be hoisted!


I like this idea - make sure as much as possible is covered! While I have my "checklists", I am still one who panics when a storm is out there!!!
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#28 Postby incogneato » Sat Mar 19, 2005 1:48 pm

Just about anything can be cooked on a grill - with enough tin foil :P

Truly though, the gas grill during these last hurricanes was a godsend. I have the kind with the attached burner, so literally anything that I would cook on a stove or bake in an oven I could do on the gas grill.

We were fortunate enough to have a generator, and a friend loaned us a window unit a/c - again another godsend. We closed off an area by hanging sheets in the doorways and hall and had a relatively comfortable and cool place to sleep. We'll be going to Home Depot either this weekend or next to buy our own - certainly a good investment.

We're also going to start NOW measuring the windows for plywood and installing the barrel locks etc so that we'll be ready in a few hours time if/when the time comes.

Another thing I've been doing is buying a few extra things at each weekly trip to the grocery store. Doing it gradually is certainly easier on my wallet! A few gallons of water one trip, some Chef-Boy-R-Dee cans the next, batteries here and there. Not much at each trip but we have a nice little stock-pile in the garage. It's not too late to start something like this!

Empty 2-liter soda bottles can be filled with water and stacked in the freezer to keep it compact - another thing I learned last season. Just DON'T do as I did the first time and fill them completely to the top! :roll: Otherwise they'll burst and you'll have a mess...

Baby wipes are wonderful, as is baby powder - it helps absorb the sweat and keep you and the kids a little drier than you would have been.

Rechargeable batteries and a charger are also a good idea, in certain circumstances. My home was without power for 4 weeks after the first storm, but my place of employment had power, so I could bring the batteries into work, plug in the charger, and have them fresh for the evening.

The best thing I could say to prepare with would be a good attitude. It was absolutely and completely miserable for myself and thousands of others this last season, but good humor and lots of prayers and consideration for our neighbors got us through. Granted, it wore thin at times, but keeping a cool head and an open mind is priceless.

Best of luck to all!

'neato
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#29 Postby Persepone » Mon Mar 21, 2005 1:03 am

Jagno wrote:... I do alot of canning in quart jars as well as dehydrating and keeping lots of canned veggies and fruit as well as juices on hand. I have water, water and more water. I also buy the Borden's milk in a box which my kids love and it has a fairly long shelf life. I can meals that my family eats regularly...The main part of the dish is prepared and ready to heat and eat. I don't want to be over a stove or grill of any kind on a miserably hot and humid day following a hurricaine. They are boxed in Rubbermaid totes and have traveled with us during evacuations as well. This was just my way of saying that I don't want to be dependent on an already over-burdened relief system during a catastrophic event.


Great list! Easily adapted to commercially-canned stuff for those who do not home can. I think it is especially important to notice that this is not odd or unusual food, but is nutritious food that the family normally likes and eats.
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#30 Postby cycloneye » Sun Apr 17, 2005 6:45 am

For those who haved not replied here yet and talk about your preparations before the season starts as the season draws closer and closer here is the thread to talk about it.
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#31 Postby depotoo » Sun Apr 17, 2005 1:31 pm

one thing i would suggest for all - thank goodness we didn't need it last year but my husband got it just in case - is a large tarp and tape to tape it down with. if you were to lose any of your roof, well you may not be able to find one when you need it. i heard of many people needing tarps and not being able to get one. for our gas grill we had 3 bottles of propane, to be safe, after hearing the stories last year of people going weeks without electricity, think we will have 4 this year. if you can't afford one then get a butane torch if you can't find a stove - the first storm my husband used that to cook us burgers, eggs, toast, and hotdogs.
if you get a genrator remember unless you are an electrician - don't plug it up to the house - this can electrocute a worker down the power line grid.
another thing that is good to have around is kiwi strawberry Juicy Juice - it has far more potassium than gatorade. helps to replace lost fluids from the heat very quickly and having to use less of it.
get a generator if you can and if you do -
the room air conditioners are are great investment - ours only cost us 78 each last year. makes for a much more comfortable environment .
having an air mattress for the kids is great too - that way you can put it in your room at night with the a/c there for all of you to use.
batteries - lot's and lot's of batteries- the flashlights to g with those batteries and a small battery operated tv with radio and if you can find it - weather radio also is absolutely necessary - it is your link to the outside world while you are riding it out. ours used up about 3 sets of batteries in 4 days of constant use. your cell phone - if you can afford it get a gps one - seems to keep working alot longer than the regular ones. and they were the first to be able to be used after the storm as tehy rely on satellites to work rather than just towers.
have lots of water, canned foods, etc. get all your prescriptions refilled just before the storms in case you can't get them refilled for awhile. since we had a generator we made certain our freezer was jammed full -the fuller it is the longer it will last until you get that genreator up and running. we took water bottles and froze them before the storm and then after we just took them out to drink. remember that you may not have running water for awhile afterwards - we are on well - remember if you are your well runs off electricity and if you have large containers of water then you won't waste your generator on running it. remember you need water for drinking for you and your pets and cooking possibly. also you will need it to flush the toilet - by filling your tubs just before the storm adn duct taping the drain - this can be used for that. you will want some water so you can sponge bathe. also even with a generator unless you have a whole house one - then you will get used to cool showers.
remember a first aid kit and not just the standard - add things for poison ivy, ace bandages, etc. if you live where that is a possibilty-just think smart.
also if you live in a low lying area or have a pond close to you or other body of water - get yourself some waders and at least knee high. we saw some streets where we ilve that could not get their vehicles out as the water on the end of the road was so deep. and our driveway has a low spot that we could not cross with out these. when cleaning up the aftermat they are wonderful to keep you from gettign soaking wet. if you have dogs - get a stake and long chain for at elast one- we saw many fences go down and that way your pet can go outside by itself for awhile. make certain all vehicles are filled and have a spare can or 2 of gas as well if you can store it relatively safely. edited - my husband reminded me you need many cans of gas for the generator.
well - sorry i took so much room but hope these suggestions help.
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#32 Postby bosag » Tue Apr 19, 2005 2:10 pm

On the coffee subject, I never could figure out how to make coffee in those non-electric percolators(how long to perk it for). I have a stainless steal teakettle that I make my coffee in, I just let it boil for about 15 minutes, turn off the heat and let the grounds settle to the bottom for a couple of minutes and I have pretty good coffee. Then I just dump the grounds out and rinse out the pot.
I also learned how to bake yeast bread on our grill last summer, I just took a couple of those red bricks and placed the loaf pan on top of the bricks and turned the grill to its lowest temp and I was pleasently surprised on how it came out. I m still working on homemade pizza, I just cant get the temp right on that for some reason so it cooks evenly. We also have a gas stove in the kitcken , so we have propane comming outta everywhere! LOL

Barb
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#33 Postby Persepone » Sun May 01, 2005 8:37 pm

depotoo wrote:make certain all vehicles are filled and have a spare can or 2 of gas as well if you can store it relatively safely. edited - my husband reminded me you need many cans of gas for the generator.
.


Don't forget that a vehicle's gas tank is a perfectly good place to store generator gas--the vehicle does not have to start, run, be registered, street legal, etc.--if it's gas tank is okay and does not leak... I'm always amazed when people don't fill up the tanks on vehicles they have sitting on their property that have large gas tanks... Perhaps it is because they can't or don't want to drive them to a gas station or they are not registered or something. But you can, if you start early before the storm, fill the tank from another vehicle and then go back and refill the vehicle... Probably a lot safer than having a bunch of gas cans stashed somewhere. Lots of While this does not work for everyone, I think it might work for people who somehow just don't think about filling the car they are trying to sell, the RV, the other vehicle they have stored...
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#34 Postby GalvestonDuck » Wed May 11, 2005 3:07 pm

Persepone wrote:
depotoo wrote:make certain all vehicles are filled and have a spare can or 2 of gas as well if you can store it relatively safely. edited - my husband reminded me you need many cans of gas for the generator.
.


Don't forget that a vehicle's gas tank is a perfectly good place to store generator gas--the vehicle does not have to start, run, be registered, street legal, etc.--if it's gas tank is okay and does not leak... I'm always amazed when people don't fill up the tanks on vehicles they have sitting on their property that have large gas tanks... Perhaps it is because they can't or don't want to drive them to a gas station or they are not registered or something. But you can, if you start early before the storm, fill the tank from another vehicle and then go back and refill the vehicle... Probably a lot safer than having a bunch of gas cans stashed somewhere. Lots of While this does not work for everyone, I think it might work for people who somehow just don't think about filling the car they are trying to sell, the RV, the other vehicle they have stored...


And get a locking gas cap. :wink:
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#35 Postby LaPlaceFF » Fri May 13, 2005 6:48 pm

depotoo wrote:just a thought for those in prone areas- if you are staying and you live here year round - and your cell phone did not work after the storms last year - look into getting a gps phone - it will work when others won't. mine was the only one of all our neighbors that did for about 4 days after - turns out it's because it is gps. it is more expensive - i had to have one to get good coverage with my carrier where we live so was very lucky - everyone was using mine.


What's the difference between GPS and regular celluar?
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#36 Postby HurricaneQueen » Mon May 16, 2005 7:17 pm

I have been preparing for so many years that I take most things for granted and just go into auto mode when a storm is even remotely on the horizon. All of the ideas above are good ones. There are two items I have to add this year-rabbit ears for the portable TV and a miner's headlamp (hands free while your trying to work.) I've also heard that Swiffer Wet Jet pads are great for quick cleanups.

FOR THOSE LIVING IN FLORIDA, DON"T FORGET WE HAVE A TAX FREE PERIOD FROM JUNE 1-12 FOR HURRICANE SUPPLIES!!!!

In my estimation (and from experience) you can not have enough water. We fill tubs (duct tape the drain as an added precaution against drainage from pressure changes), buckets, extra trash cans and everything that will hold water both at home and at our "safe house". We also have a few 5 gal. camping showers. I repeat, you can't have enough water for bathing, flushing, cleaning and drinking. Taking a trip through a few camping departments at some of your local stores will give you some great ideas. We also have a couple of port-a potties ready to go. I put a roll of tissue and a jar of clorox in a five gal. bucket with a lid. Just add some water when ready to use. (Take out the paper first!!!)

Another good idea for cooking are disposable grills along with propane camping grills. We even learned to re-heat coffee over a candle using a knife as a heat conductor. Necessity is definitely the mother of invention! Speaking of coffee, you can always heat water and pour over grounds in a filter if push comes to shove.

In addition to canned goods, I generally freeze leftovers starting the first of June. They help fill up the freezer and taste better than canned goods. As they thaw, we heat them up and eat before they spoil. This year we do have a new generator so hopefully that won't be as much of an issue. Boxed milk (Parlamat) is great for cereal.

We have a heavy duty, semi-large fan that moves A LOT of air but I like the idea of getting a window air conditioner. We also have personal battery operated fans that help in a pinch.

Good luck, everyone,
Lynn
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#37 Postby Roxy » Tue May 17, 2005 8:32 am

Thanks you guys, I just made the list and sent it to my other half.
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#38 Postby bosag » Fri May 20, 2005 11:29 am

While my inlaws were here during Jeannie, they bought for my younger sons these Little Tyke Flashlights in the shape of animals. We got the tiger and the hippo and so when you press the handle to turn on the flashlight, they also emit the most ANNOYING animal sounds you have ever heard. LOL!. YEs I know the thought was there and I appreciate it but............Plus they use C batteries, but so does the t.v. so at least that part of it is good. Barb
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#39 Postby Anonymous » Tue May 24, 2005 2:33 am

Not sure if this has been posted but keep a fire extinguisher on hand just in case you need it.
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#40 Postby Persepone » Wed May 25, 2005 3:41 pm

Not only fire extinguishers, but battery operated (not hard wired) smoke detectors and, perhaps overlooked, but very important--battery operated (not hard wired) CO Detector(s). Especially in a power outage, it is important to know if there is a CO problem in your house/living space, etc. because you may be using CO-producing fuels, etc. for cooking, etc. (and of course heating in winter storms--last winter we had several serious CO poisioning incidents in MA because of blocked exhaust ducts.

This can be a danger even in the summer. If you have a gas clothes dryer, for example, don't forget that it produces CO and must be vented to the outside. If the vent is blocked by some type of debris, CO could be backing up into your house (in the winter these typically get blocked by snow since they are only a few inches above the ground. But other stuff can block them as well.) Same is true for other gas-burning devices that your normally think of as "safe."
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