Various sources report an increase in the amount and impact of natural disasters. When adversity strikes, you don’t have to resign yourself to being a helpless victim. The whole family can work together to stay safe during a catastrophic natural event and recover quickly afterward. Here are some tips to get you started, courtesy of Weather Madness.

Minimizing Potential Damage and Removing Unsafe Branches

You can’t change what the weather will do, but you can mitigate the destruction it leaves. Prepare mentally for a disaster by acknowledging the specific risks in your area. Discuss the reality with your children and run practice drills for taking shelter or escaping. Keep from exacerbating possible injury by training everyone to remain calm.

The danger of wind gusts from tornadoes, hurricanes, and other storms often comes from projectiles on the property. Keep your yard tidy and free of debris. A professional tree removal service can clear out hazards before an event. If branches or trees fall onto your property after a storm, these pros have the correct equipment to clear the area safely. Check out online reviews and testimonials, then call contractors to inquire about their services. Find out if stump grinding and disposal are included in the estimates. Compare at least three companies to find the fairest deal.

Planning Your Shelter or Escape

Keep emergency supplies for when the household must shelter in place and update your stock annually. Maintain three days’ worth of canned goods or dry foods and a minimum of three gallons of water per individual.

Consider purchasing a gas generator in case of a power outage, but never use gas-powered generators indoors due to the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning and other hazards. While generally more expensive up front, solar generator systems provide your power needs without as many safety concerns. Phone lines and the internet may go down, so consider a satellite phone or HAM radio for communication.

Each family member should prepare a “go bag.” Also, keep an emergency escape kit in the car for an unexpected flight. Your bag might include:

  • A change of clothes
  • Medication and toiletries
  • Cash and credit cards
  • Spare car and home keys
  • Books and games to occupy the kids
  • A flashlight and windup radio
  • A map and phone numbers of emergency contacts

The family should review escape routes from work, home, and school at least yearly. And if you need to make any renovations to increase your security, using this home management app is a great place to begin because it gives you access not only to plenty of how-to tips and videos, but you can also video-chat with experts if you have any questions.

Protecting Your Commercial Interests

If you earn your livelihood from home, form an emergency plan to keep your operations functional during a disaster or create means to return to work as quickly as possible. One advantage of a home business is that a portion of the cost of backup internet or power generators is tax deductible. Note that homeowners insurance may not suffice to recoup business losses. Communicate with your agent about coverage for your home office through an endorsement or an additional policy.

If you typically work from a desktop, create a mobile setup with a laptop or tablet and mobile Wi-Fi. Protect critical and sensitive digital documents with cloud storage services. You can also use this tool to combine PDFs and help you stay organized. Confidential hard copies of documents can be stored in a fireproof and waterproof safe.

Remaining Safe After a Disaster

Whether at home or away, maintain a clean and tidy living area and wear protective gear when cleaning up. Address your family’s mental and emotional health with counseling if necessary. Create a regular routine and progressive goals so everyone can focus on the future, not the loss.

Disasters are an unfortunate reality, but the difference between long-lasting damage and recuperating quickly depends on your preparation. Schedule a family meeting to create your disaster preparedness plan and a home business emergency plan.

For all the weather information you’ll ever need, turn to Weather Madness. Questions? We’d love to hear from you!