Action Plan

Chrome 2001
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Harvard Medical School
Chrome 2001
Chrome 2001

Action Plan

Healthy Lifestyle
Action Plan
Action Plan
Action plan for hurricanes.
InteliHealth Content

InteliHealth Content



Action Plan
Before a Hurricane
  • Determine the hurricane risk in your area.
  • Put together a Family Disaster Plan. It is important to review the plan often so that all family members, including children, understand it and know what to do in case of a hurricane.
  • Put together a Disaster Supplies Kit for your home and a smaller one for your car.
  • Install smoke detectors on each level of your home. Test monthly and change the batteries once a year.
  • Learn how to use an ABC-type fire extinguisher and make sure it remains charged.
  • Learn about your community's hurricane plan and the disaster plans at your workplace and your child's school.
  • Find out where the nearest evacuation center or shelter is located.
  • Understand the warnings and watches issued by the National Weather Service regarding hurricanes. Warnings and watches are issued for a particular area so it is important to know the name of your county or parish.
    • A hurricane watch is issued when there is a threat of a hurricane within 24 to 36 hours.
    • A hurricane warning is issued when hurricane conditions are expected in 24 hours or less.
  • Develop a family evacuation plan.
    • Make sure all family members know where to go if they have to evacuate.
    • Have more than one route of evacuation in case your primary route is blocked.
  • Determine the items that will need to be moved inside when a hurricane threatens. The winds of a hurricane can blow even heavy objects around, potentially causing damage and injury.
  • Remove debris from outside your home and trim trees and shrubs.
  • Install permanent hurricane shutters OR install anchors on windows and predrill holes in plywood. Protect glass doors, as well.
    • Hurricane winds can destroy a home if they enter through a broken window.
    • Taping windows is not recommended because it does not protect the windows from breaking.
  • Be prepared to protect your home before a hurricane threatens. Waiting will increase the likelihood that stores will be sold out of necessary items.
  • Inventory the items in your home for insurance purposes.
When a Hurricane Watch Is Issued
  • Listen for updated information on a NOAA Weather Radio or a battery-powered radio or television.
  • Fill your car with gas in case you need to evacuate.
  • If you live in a manufactured home, check the tie-downs.
  • Secure loose items outside of your home.
  • Prepare your windows and glass doors.
  • Check your Disaster Supplies Kit.
  • Turn your refrigerator and freezer to the highest setting and try not to open the doors. If you lose power, your food will remain cold longer.
  • Unplug small appliances, turn off propane tanks and be prepared to turn off your utilities if authorities in your community say you should do so.
  • Review your evacuation plans.
When a Hurricane Warning Is Issued
  • Listen for updated information and evacuation instructions on a NOAA Weather Radio or battery-powered radio or television.
  • Be prepared to evacuate, if told to do so.
  • If you live in a manufactured home, evacuate immediately.
  • If you evacuate:
    • Leave as soon as possible.
    • Turn off your electricity and water supply and secure your home.
    • Tell someone outside of the storm area where you are going.
    • If you live in a storm surge or flooding zone, and if time permits, move furniture and valuables to a higher floor.
    • Bring your disaster supplies and warm clothing to the shelter.
  • If you do not evacuate:
    • Stay inside on the first floor, away from windows, skylights and glass doors.
    • Lie on the floor under a sturdy object.
    • Close all interior doors and secure exterior doors.
    • Store extra drinking water in clean bathtubs and sinks and plastic bottles.
    • If you lose power, unplug appliances.
    • Watch for flooding and tornadoes.
After a Hurricane
  • Listen for updates and instructions on a NOAA Weather Radio or battery-powered radio or television.
  • Return home only when you are told that it is safe.
  • Check yourself for injuries. Help others who are injured (only move those who may be further injured).
  • Wear sturdy shoes.
  • Watch for broken glass, debris, spills and downed power lines.
  • Stay dry to avoid the risk of hypothermia.
  • Stay out of damaged buildings.
  • If it is safe to re-enter your home, inspect for damage to the electrical, gas, sewage and water systems.
    • If there are sparks or broken wires, turn off the electricity (unless you have to step in water to get to the fuse box or circuit breaker).
    • If you smell gas or hear a hissing sound, open a window and leave the building. If possible, turn off the gas from the main valve outside and call the gas company. The gas can only be turned back on by a professional.
    • If you think there is sewage damage, avoid using the toilet.
    • If you suspect water system damage, avoid using water from the tap.
  • Use the telephone for life-threatening emergencies only.
  • Use a flashlight and not candles, which can ignite flammable materials.
  • Watch out for fire hazards.
  • Watch out for animals, especially snakes, that may have entered your home with floodwater.
  • Stay away from floodwater.
    • Do not try to walk through flooded areas. As little as 6 inches of water can knock you off your feet.
    • Do not try to drive through flooded areas. The road may be washed away and as little as 2 feet of water can move a vehicle.
    • Floodwater can contain dangerous debris or fallen power lines.
    • Floodwater can contain chemicals, sewage and other contaminants that cause disease.
  • Avoid drinking or cooking with tap water until you are sure that it is not contaminated. Do not use this water for brushing your teeth either.
  • You can use water from undamaged hot water heaters or melt ice cubes if you cannot use your water supply.


Last updated October 10, 2013

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