TOWSON, MD (June 16, 2020) ––With the arrival of hurricane season, AAA is reminding area residents to restock their storm supply kits, as well as include COVID-19 protection, like masks, gloves and hand sanitizer. The past few months of the pandemic depleted store shelves and prompted more time at home, a combination that may have had some families turning to their storm kit for needed supplies.
If that sounds familiar, now is the time to take stock of your kit and ensure you have all the items you need, as well as additional items for COVID-19 protection.
“Don’t wait until the next storm makes the local news to prepare,” said Ragina C. Ali, Manager of Public and Government Affairs for AAA Mid-Atlantic. “As we saw during the pandemic, products can sell out quickly.Now is the time to collectemergency items for your hurricane supply kit, including personal protection equipment to protect you from COVID-19.”
With the need to include COVID-19 protection supplies, theCDChas revised its guidelines for 2020 hurricane preparedness:
Recommended Hurricane Preparedness Items:
- Water (one gallon per person, per day, for at least three days)
- Three-day supply of non-perishable food
- Flashlight and extra batteries
- First-aid kit
- Adequate supplies of paper towels, toilet paper and sanitizing wipes
- Face masks, gloves, soap and hand sanitizer
- Cell phone, power bank and charger
- Pet food and extra water
- Prescription medications
- A container so you can easily take your items along if you have to evacuate to a shelter or other location
We’re only two weeks into the hurricane season, but the Atlantic basin has already seen three named storms come ashore.Two of those arrived on the East Coast before the official start of the season.
Along with an upgraded hurricane supply kit, ensure you have an emergency plan and that you have communicated it to family members. According to a 2015 FEMA study, 60 percent of Americans do not practice what to do in the event of a natural disaster.
AAA offers these tips on preparing for hurricane season:
- Make a Plan– Develop a family emergency plan to include ways to contact each other, alternative meeting locations, and an out-of-town contact. Identify a safe room or safest areas in your home. Research your evacuation route. Be sure to include plans for your pets.
- Secure Your Home– While you may have used your time in quarantine to do work around the house, it may not have included storm preparedness projects. Inspect your home for minor repairs needed to the roof, windows, downspouts, etc. Trim trees or bushes that could cause damage to your home in the event of high winds.
- Take Inventory– Update your home inventory by walking through your home with a video camera or smart phone. Keep a record of large purchases, including the cost of the item, date purchased, and model and serial numbers if available.
- Check Your Vehicle – Make sure your vehicle has a full tank of gas, properly inflated tires and wiper blades that are in good condition. Have your vehicle inspected by a certified mechanic to determine if the brakes, fluid levels, air conditioning and belts are in good working condition, especially if your vehicle was idle for long periods of time during quarantine.
- Protect Your Property– Review your homeowner’s insurance coverage with your agent to determine if you have adequate protection. Discuss your deductibles. Be aware that flood insurance is not typically covered under your homeowner’s policy. Flooding to your vehicle, however, is available under physical damage coverage.