Every year, millions of Americans need to be prepared for hurricane season, which is always here "before we know it."
June 1st heralds the beginning of Hurricane Season. I think most Floridians think they are prepared, either with nice storm shutters, or plywood for their window protection.
The peak occurs September 10th, but don't be fooled. As the season literally cools down, there is far more activity in October than, say, early June, or July.
It is so sad to see my dad's workshop completely demolished by high winds. After the storm, Dad did admit that if he'd had time to install the roll-up doors, the workshop would have had a better chance of surviving the wind gusts.
With two open doorways, the wind rushed in, and through, the building and lifted off the roof.
We spent days clearing up. It was amazing how both lawnmowers survived, as did the hidden old Mercedes!
It was a very humbling experience and one I will never forget.
You know a hurricane has been through and power's not back on when you hear gasoline-powered generators throughout your neighborhood—but even one light (and keeping your refrigerator on) is worth the noise.
Top of the list, though, for being hurricane-ready is emergency food and supplies. Get your NOAA radio, medical supplies, batteries, and maps ready now—so you won't be rushing around later.
Start buying an
extra gallon or two of water each week when you shop. This way, the expense
won't be 'all at once' when the hurricane strikes and you'll be hurricane-ready! Plus, it's easier to carry one (or two) water bottles at a time. :-)
Food: Get cracking and get some fresh produce dehydrated now.
We had our 'wake-up' call in 2004 after I'd been in Florida 24 years without seeing any hurricanes personally. We do not take the hurricane season lightly anymore.
Well, we weren't really hurricane-ready. It doesn't seem all that long ago that Dad and I popped down to Lowe's of Vero Beach, Florida, in his truck, and we were lining up... along with 30 or so other like-minded people.
All of whom had flatbeds in tow, with sheets of plywood standing on edge.
It was a feeling of camaraderie. No one was panicking, no pushing and shoving to get to the front of the line.
We were all there for the same reason—to protect our homes and families and to be prepared for Hurricane Frances (and Jeanne, as it turned out).
Check out our photos of what remained after the twin hurricanes.
Kudos definitely go to Lowe's for being so organized—and this was at 7 a.m. in the morning!
Copyright© June 2011
Added September 12, 2013:
like to add a few words here as it's been almost a year now since
Hurricane Sandy—the deadliest and most destructive hurricane of the
2012 season and won't soon be forgotten either—and my heart goes out
to the survivors who are no doubt still trying to get their lives back to
some semblance of normalcy.
Today the weather outside my window is thundery and pouring down with rain—ah well, that's what you get for living in the (almost) tropics... so, I'm keeping my fingers and toes crossed that this year we'll be blessed with no hurricane damage at all to the beautiful shorelines of the United States of America.
Added May 22, 2018:
Another update: We moved house and had to rent for a short while—but it was our first experience with real metal shutters! What an absolute JOY to put up compared to the horrible sheets of plywood.
I did the shutters for the whole rental house in about an hour, compared to a six-hour plywood slog with help from hubby. So glad our new home too has the metal shutters.
Added late September, 2019:
Another update: We moved house again (as stated above) from the rental to where we are now and really, what an easy job now to put up metal shutters. I wish I had a few panels that were 'see-through' though. I think those kinds of panels are probably made of fiberglass. I'll look into that!
Added June, 2022:
Another update and no shocker: We moved house again (been in our latest home for over a year now) and we installed fancy 'Bahama-style' shutters.
Not only are they nice to look at, they function well, and are easy to close when needed. No more lugging around metal shutters.
One caveat: they do tend to diminish natural light inside the house (no surprise) as they're 'installed' for year-round, no-tote hurricane protection.
Thanks for visiting "Be prepared for hurricane season." I know we all do the best we can.
The time is now to get those plastic water bottles billed (I store mine in my Florida room so if they leak, the water won't be inside the main part of the home).