June 1 marks the official start of hurricane season in the Atlantic basin. The season is said to end November 30, with the peak around Sept. 10 and most activity occurring between mid-August and mid-October. 

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Hurricane Center, there are an average of 12 storms annually in the Atlantic basin. With hurricane season approaching, staying informed and prepared is the most important thing to do. Preparedness saves lives. 

Below is a list of essential items to have in case of a hurricane: 

  • Bottled water
  • Non-perishable food
  • Portable chargers
  • Extension cords
  • Box fan
  • Grill and propane
  • Whistle
  • Batteries
  • Flashlights 
  • Candles and lighter
  • Medical Supplies
  • Cash
  • Pet supplies

You can also prepare in other ways, like ensuring that your vehicle is filled with gas, charging necessary devices, and having a secure place to store essential personal items, medication and documents. 

Most importantly, have a plan. This may be an evacuation plan with a designated path and meeting place, booking necessary accommodations, making arrangements for pets, etc. Your safety and that of your family is always the priority. Review your plan, supplies and overall preparedness often to ensure everyone knows what to do and where to be in dire circumstances. 

You can also prepare your home for a hurricane by installing storm shutters, reinforcing garage doors, trimming shrubs and trees, and securing loose outdoor items. It may also be a good idea to invest in a generator for backup power. As hurricane season approaches, you should review any applicable insurance plans you have and consider purchasing additional precautions. 

A considerable part of hurricane safety is staying informed. It is important to be updated on the latest news and weather alerts surrounding the storm. You should also be aware of local and national resources available for your safety. 

For long-term preparedness, restock emergency supplies following a storm, review your plan and its effectiveness, and make any necessary updates. It is important to use your time wisely and effectively to make yourself and your loved ones as prepared, informed, and safe as possible.