Recently, it’s become clear that a severe weather plan is necessary for families across the country, especially with Hurricane Florence and Hurricane Michael having decimated parts of the Southeast. In June, strong thunderstorms produced tornados that caused damage to homes, trees, and power lines in parts of our Central Illinois service area. Those caught off guard during natural disasters could face devastating consequences, from losing their possessions to losing their lives. These tips will help families create a severe weather plan to be prepared for Illinois’ next thunderstorm, tornado, or winter weather event.
Create an Emergency Shelter
Every family should have an emergency shelter in the home. It should contain a well-stocked supply kit at all times, which should include:
- Battery-powered weather alert radio
- Extra batteries
- Identification for every family member
- Map for tracking the storm
- Extra car keys
- Extra shoes for each family member
- Pillows or blankets to protect from flying debris
Every family member should know where the supply box is located and how to use the radio. It’s also wise to store important documents and valuables in this room, as well as emergency cash (debit and credit cards require electricity for processing).
Consider Every Family Member
The severe weather plan should account for the entire family. Tornados only give a few moments’ warning, and there’s no guarantee the whole family will be together when it strikes. Children should know what to do and who to contact if their parents aren’t home. Pets should always have up-to-date identification tags and vaccinations. The plan must also account for their whereabouts during the situation, especially if the family has to leave their home.
There’s no convenient time for disaster to strike, so families should have separate plans for daytime and at nighttime emergencies. If severe weather strikes during the work or school day, each person should know a meeting location or way to get in touch. In addition, gas and water often need to be shut off during emergencies to prevent secondary issues, like fire, so it’s important to know where to find these valves and how to work them.
After the Storm
We deal with all sorts of severe weather in Central Illinois—from brutally cold snowstorms to powerful tornados—so most people here know how to act in the face of bad weather. If your family doesn’t already have one, create a severe weather plan to help minimize the impact of a disaster on your family. If disaster does strike and your home is damaged, HelpPro1 will help clean up the mess with restoration and reconstruction services. We offer round-the-clock emergency assistance, so we can be there for your family when you need us. Call HelpPro1 at (844) 435-7776 to get help now!