Hurrican Shutters

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Posts Tagged ‘Tropical Depression’

Preparations for your Pet

Posted by cat5shuttersllc on June 20, 2014

Preparations for your Pet

* Have your pet micro chipped, so they can be identified if they go missing.

* Get your pets acclimated to a locking crate or carrier. Just leave it out and open so they can freely go in and out to get comfortable with it.

* Do not leave your pet behind and alone, they may find a way to get out and run away.

* Evacuations may last longer than a day so make sure to be prepared for a week or two if needed with their food and toys.

* Most public shelters do not allow pets. Make sure to find a pet friendly shelter and call ahead to be sure.

* Some hotels will slow pets for a storm, again always call ahead.

* Your vet or animal shelter may take in pets on a list prior to a storm coming, call and find out what steps you would need to do to get on that list.

* Be attentive to your pet even after a storm blows through. Streets and yards may be flooded and full of debris. Nails, wood, glass and other objects can injury your pet and yourself.

* It is easy for animal to become disorientated, and there will be lots of unusual smells and thing t o explore that may be hazardous to them. Down power lines, puddles and other things could harm them and your self, so pay attention when going for walks.

* Be aware of wild animals running loose looking for dry land or food, from raccoons to snakes to other creatures finding their way into your home.

No matter what the case may be, always be prepared. Your home your family and your pets.

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Florida riding a lucky streak as hurricane season 2014 opens

Posted by cat5shuttersllc on June 12, 2014

Florida riding a lucky streak as hurricane season 2014 opensThe last time a hurricane struck Florida, we were in the midst of a Shaq attack, largely oblivious to a phenom in Cleveland named LeBron becoming the youngest player to score more than 50 points in a pro basketball game. Jeb Bush was governor. And about 27,000 Miami-Dade first-graders hadn’t even been born. That may seem like ages ago in South Florida years. But in hurricane time, it’s just a lucky streak that forecasters warn could end anytime over the next six-month hurricane season, which officially opened Sunday.
“We’re very vulnerable, so it’s a matter of when, not if,” said National Hurricane Center Director Rick Knabb.
Florida, hit more times than any other state, has not had a hurricane in eight straight seasons — a desperately needed break after the worst two back-to-back years on record. But since then, there have been plenty of near misses fired from the Atlantic Basin, which experts say remains in a cycle of high activity.
In 2004, four hurricanes made landfall — Charley, Frances, Ivan and Jeanne — the most recorded for the state in a single year. And 2005 was no cake walk: Three hurricanes crossed Florida that year including Katrina, on its fatal course to New Orleans, and Wilma, which slogged across the Everglades to leave a record-breaking 98 percent of South Florida in the dark and cause $20.6 billion in damage.
But since 2005, every hurricane has veered away from the peninsula — either skirting the coast like Superstorm Sandy or simply fizzling. But the state has not escaped unscathed. Enough tropical storms made landfall to ring up millions in damages.
In 2008, Tropical Storm Fay zigzagged its way to a record four landfalls in the state, causing five deaths and inflicting $560 million in damage. In 2012, Hurricane Isaac never made landfall in Florida, but its soggy tail whacked Palm Beach County, unleashing massive flooding that stranded some western residents for up to two days. Price: $71 million. That same year, Tropical Storm Debby dropped nearly 30 inches of rain on North Florida and the Panhandle, sending the Sopchoppy River over its banks and costing $250 million.
Meanwhile, the Gulf and the Caribbean got hammered.
In 2007, Noel killed 163 people in Hispaniola but then took a turn after it crossed Cuba and missed Florida. Three storms marched across the Gulf the next year: First, Dolly slammed Texas with 16 inches of rain, followed by Gustav in Louisiana and finally Ike, a massive storm that hit the entire coast from Louisiana west to Corpus Christi, Texas. Altogether, they generated more than $34 billion in damage.
In 2009, a small late-season hurricane named Ida made a beeline for Nicaragua from the Southwest Caribbean, leaving about 40,000 homeless before making landfall in Alabama and heading up the southeast coast to become a nor’easter.
During each of the next three years, 19 named storms stumbled around the North Atlantic, ricocheting off the Greater Antilles in the Caribbean. In 2010, five hurricanes hit Mexico, killing dozens and costing $7 billion.
And then there’s Sandy, the hurricane that skipped past Florida to devastate a swath of the Northeast after becoming a superstorm when it collided with a winter storm late in 2012.
Officially, this year is expected to be relatively quiet.
Forecasters say the El Niño weather pattern in the Pacific should keep the number of named storms to between eight and 13. They predict that three to six may become hurricanes and that two could grow into major storms. But, as forecasters emphasize every year, it only takes one big storm to make a bad year. And they have no bigger reminder than Sandy, which spun out of a frenzied year in which 10 hurricanes formed but only one made headlines.
“Sandy reminded us that loss of life and property during a tropical storm doesn’t necessarily come about from wind and rain. It comes from storm surge,” said National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Director Kathryn Sullivan.
Sandy proved to be a moment of reckoning for coastal states. Katrina may have shed light on the dangers of flooding, but the bowl-shaped topography of New Orleans made it seem uniquely vulnerable. In the wake of Sandy’s 72 deaths in the U.S. and $50 billion in damage, the country undertook a serious reassessment. Efforts were made to streamline emergency response and relief. And Congress agreed to spend $476 million on improved forecasting tools, including storm surge maps the hurricane center will roll out this year from its storm-proof bunker on Florida International University’s campus.
The maps, in real-time and interactive, will go up on the center’s website (www.nhc.noaa.gov) about an hour after it issues warnings and watches. That’s about 48 hours before winds are expected to make landfall, said Jamie Rhome, who heads the center’s storm surge unit. The information will be updated every six hours and show where water may go and how high it might rise. Designers worked hard to make them user-friendly, said Rhome, who compared their operation with Google maps.
“It will have a local feel, but you won’t be able to zoom in and out of a specific home,” he said.
The information has been available in text form for years, he said. But until recently, forecasters didn’t have the computer power needed to model so much information. The maps have to accommodate not only the contours of the coastline — both above ground and under water — but the intensity of a storm, where it lands, how fast it is moving, the angle it approaches and the timing of tides.
Max Mayfield, a former director of the hurricane center and hurricane specialist with WPLG-ABC 10, said the maps, which he began asking for when he was director between 2000 and 2007, are long overdue.
“Most people evacuate because of the wind, but by far the vast majority of people — in fact, 88 percent — die from water,” he said.
When Sandy made landfall in October 2012 on the south shore of New Jersey, its tropical storm-force winds extended about 1,000 miles. Water rose along the entire East Coast, from Florida to Maine, NOAA later reported. Tide gauges at the Battery in Manhattan and on Staten Island recorded water levels about nine feet above the lowest-lying spots on the shoreline. At Sandy Hook in New Jersey, a gauge measured eight feet before it failed.
NOAA repeatedly issued warnings about the surge. Gary Szatkowski, a meteorologist stationed at a weather station in Mount Holly, New Jersey, where 24 people died, even included his contact information to personally persuade anyone with doubts.
“Think of the rescue/recovery teams who will rescue you if you are injured or recover your remains if you do not survive,” he wrote. “If you think the storm is overhyped and exaggerated, please err on the side of caution. You can call me up Friday (contact information is at the end of this briefing) and yell at me all you want.”
Yet a NOAA survey taken afterward found that 79 percent of residents along the coast where warnings were issued said they were caught off-guard by the size of the surge. And that weighed heavily on forecasters in the two years since, Rhome said.
“I’ve heard the word accelerate more times than I can count,” he said, referring to the pressure to produce the maps.
The best use of the maps, forecasters say, is for planning. They’ll allow people to not only determine in advance whether they might need to evacuate, but track an escape route in case they wait.
“The only thing it doesn’t tell you is the timing of when that water is going to get there, and sometimes escape routes get cut off,” said Jeff Masters, director of meteorology at the popular website Weather Underground. “So you have to be aware of timing issues.”
The modeling for the maps is so far conservative, with the chance of storm surge exceeding the amount indicated only one in 10, Rhome explained. Masters and others hope the center can improve accuracy.
“It’s a reasonable worst-case scenario. It’s not an explicit forecast because nobody can predict exactly how much surge there is going to be in a given spot,” Rhome said.
The center plans to test and tinker with the maps this year and next before finalizing them. The center also plans to start issuing surge watches and warnings in 2015 to accompany wind warnings.
“Warnings have always been a call to action. They are our most formal and direct way of communicating,” Rhome said. “The analogy here is if you’re standing in the road, I might tell you standing in the road is dangerous. That’s the graphic. The warning is telling you if you don’t get out of the road, you’re going to get hit by a car.”

Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2014/05/31/4150051/florida-riding-a-lucky-streak.html#storylink=cpy

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5 Key Points to Know About Hurricane Season

Posted by cat5shuttersllc on May 28, 2014

5 Key Points to Know About Hurricane Season1. SLOW SEASON EXPECTED

Federal forecasters are expecting a slower-than-usual Atlantic hurricane season, with eight to 13 tropical storms and three to six hurricanes. There’s no way to tell whether any of those potential storms will strike the U.S. coastline during the six-month season that starts June 1.

2. EL NINO

The weather phenomenon known as El Nino, which warms part of the Pacific every few years and changes rain and temperature patterns around the world, is expected to suppress the number and intensity of tropical storms and hurricanes this year. Cooler temperatures on the surface of the Atlantic Ocean compared with recent years will also lower the probability of hurricane formation.

3. WHEN DOES IT GET A NAME?

Forecasters name tropical storms when top winds reach 39 mph; hurricanes have maximum winds of at least 74 mph. The first storm name on the list this year is Arthur.

4. STORM SURGE

Storm surge — the dangerous water rise created by tropical storms — is one of the deadliest and most damaging tropical storm hazards. This year, the National Hurricane Center will post color-coded maps to show coastal residents how far from the shoreline the water will spread and how high that water will rise.

5. A LITTLE BIT OF HISTORY

It’s been 10 years since the historic 2004 hurricane season, when four hurricanes affected Florida for the first time since record-keeping began: Charley, Frances, Ivan and Jeanne. There were 15 named storms that season, nine of which were hurricanes. But those four hurricanes remain among the costliest hurricanes to hit the U.S.

Whether you are in need of protecting a residence or business contact CAT 5 Shutters, LLC for a free estimate on hurricane protection.

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Do you need flood insurance?

Posted by cat5shuttersllc on May 20, 2014

Do you need flood insurance?Flood insurance is mandatory if: your property resides in a Special Flood Hazard Areayou have a federally backed mortgage on a home in a high risk areayou have received a federal grant for previous flood losses and you wish to qualify for future aid.

A flood policy can cover:
flood debris cleanupstructural damage (walls, ceilings, floors, stairways, etc.)
household appliances/utilities damaged by floodwaterwall to wall carpeting, tile and other flooring surfaces

Contents coverage can cover:
furniture,collectibles, artwork, knick-knacks,clothing, shoes, accessories, jewelry, etc.Added coverages may be available for dislocation expenses such as rent, hotel stays, meals, etc.

The maximum coverage limits under a standard flood policy are $250,000 for a single family home structure ($500,000 for businesses) and $100,000 for single-family home contents (500,000 for businesses). The coverage limit for renter contents is $100,000.
Property owners living in lower risk areas may qualify for a “preferred risk” policy which provides the same coverage’s at substantially lower rates.

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Are we lucky?

Posted by cat5shuttersllc on May 15, 2014

Are we lucky?Will this be the year the USA’s luck runs out?

With the Atlantic hurricane season starting June 1, the nation is enjoying two record streaks for a lack of hurricanes: It’s been nine years since the last hit from a “major” hurricane and also nine years since a hurricane of any sort hit Florida, traditionally the most hurricane-prone state in the nation.

Both streaks began on Oct. 24, 2005, when Category 3 Hurricane Wilma slammed into southwest Florida with 120-mph winds.

A “major” hurricane is a Category 3, 4, or 5 on the Saffir-Simpson Scale of Hurricane Intensity; the minimum wind speed for a major hurricane is 111 mph.

“This is the longest period on record with no major hurricane landfalls since 1878, when reliable landfall records began,” says Colorado State University meteorologist and hurricane expert Phil Klotzbach.
Despite its fury, Hurricane/Superstorm Sandy, was a Category 1 hurricane, with maximum winds of 80 mph, when it made landfall in October 2012 in New Jersey. Sandy is a good example of how wind speed can be an inadequate measure of a hurricane’s ferocity.

Sandy killed dozens of people and did $65 billion damage in the USA. alone, the National Climatic Data Center reported.

Hurricane Ike battered the Texas coast in 2008, killing at least 112 people and doing $27 billion in damage, but it missed the “major” hurricane label by 1 mph when it slammed ashore with winds of 110 mph.
One explanation for the hiatus in major hurricanes: “Luck, and it will run out,” says Dennis Feltgen, a spokesman with the National Hurricane Center in Miami.

Quiet hurricane season predicted

“Luck has certainly played a role,” agrees Klotzbach. Also, steering currents have helped guide storms out to sea, he says.
“We have tended to have a trough of low pressure along the East Coast of the U.S. during the past eight years, which has helped steer storms away from the mainland,” said Klotzbach.
Florida’s nine-year hurricane-free streak is also notable for the state that sticks out into the hurricane zone like a sore thumb: Since 1851, 114 hurricanes have hit Florida, according to data from the Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory. This is 39% of the total number of U.S. hurricane strikes.
“These remarkable streaks must end sometime.” noted Roger Pielke, Jr., a professor of environmental studies at the University of Colorado,
“We need to be prepared that this would be the year that both streaks end,” added Feltgen.

Hurricane season begins June 1. Klotzbach and his team at Colorado State, which includes William Gray, the dean of hurricane forecasting, are predicting a below-average season, with only three hurricanes forecast to form in the Atlantic.
AccuWeather’s forecast, released today, also predicts a below-average season, with five hurricanes.
A season with few hurricanes doesn’t mean that the ones that do form will be weak: In 1992, only four hurricanes formed, but one of them was monstrous Hurricane Andrew, which killed dozens and caused $27 billion in damages as it battered south Florida.
Federal forecasters from the Climate Prediction Center will issue their forecast on May 22.

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Florida tax free Hurricane Shopping

Posted by cat5shuttersllc on May 14, 2014

Florida tax free Hurricane ShoppingFrom May 31–June 8, Floridians can purchase batteries, flashlights, tarps, and even generators worth $750 or less without having to pay the state’s 6 percent sales tax.
“This is going to go a long way to helping Floridians prepare for hurricane season, making sure they have all the supplies they need to get themselves and their families ready,” said Bryan Koon, the state’s emergency management director.
The legislation also authorizes a three-day back-to-school sales tax holiday in August.
Under the bill (HB 5601), shoppers would not have to pay sales taxes on any clothes worth $100 or less, school supplies worth $15 or less or on the first $750 of the cost of a personal computer. This holiday will be held Aug. 1–3.
The third sales tax holiday will be held Sept. 19–21 on the purchase of energy-efficient appliances costing $1,500 or less.
The tax cut package is a portion of roughly $500 million worth of tax and fee cuts that were approved this spring by the Florida Legislature. Scott already signed into a law a rollback of annual auto registration fees. The average motorist will pay about $25 less a year on registration fees starting in September.
Scott asked for many of the tax cuts passed by legislators, but he did not get everything he wanted. The governor, for example, wanted legislators to lower the sales tax placed on commercial rent.
Legislators also rejected Scott’s request to keep alive his push to eliminate the corporate income tax. Scott at one time vowed to get rid of the tax in seven years, but has been forced to scale it back due to legislative resistance.
Rep. Ritch Workman, R-Melbourne and the House member in charge of pushing tax cut bills, said earlier this month the corporate income tax cut got “squeezed out” after legislators went along with the size of the auto registration fee rollback sought by the governor.

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Hurricane Shutters

Posted by cat5shuttersllc on May 7, 2014

Hurricane ShuttersWhat is the best kind of shutter?

The best are those that are affordable and that you can manage to install or operate. For a disabled or elderly person, this may require some sort of automated method for closing; suggesting something like accordion shutters. For the strong handyman, heavy plywood trimmed to fit within the windows with secure mounting brackets makes sense. Bahamas shutters are a favorite for some because they serve a useful purpose year-round and are quick and easy to install when needed.
Storm panels are a good compromise for many people. Steel panels offer the best protection, but are difficult to install because of their weight. Aluminum panels at a comparable price offer less protection, but are easier to install. If there is no source of heavy debris upwind, you might consider the lesser protection of aluminum shutters adequate. There are other types. The key in all of these is that the installation must be good, and done by a qualified and reliable workman, and they must suit the conditions under which they will be installed and expected to perform.
Which shutter choice is best for you depends on how much work you can do in fabricating and installing them. One word of caution: if electric power is used to open or close shutters, then a mechanical backup is mandatory, since electricity may very well be out either before or after a hurricane.

What about plastic films?

Plastic films are no substitute for shutters or plywood covers for windows and doors. However, demonstrations of their strength are quite impressive, and they are probably the next best thing to solid covers for windows and doors, especially where access to such glass areas is physically restricted. One problem is that they provide only a small measure of protection for the glass itself, and frequently the frame holding the glass in place can fail. This includes both windows and sliding glass doors.

How do I choose a company I can trust?

The same way one goes about choosing any company that performs services. Make sure they are licensed and above all, check their references. If the company provides the references, they will likely not give you names of unsatisfied customers; thus referrals from friends and relatives are preferable. Also, check with your local licensing authority, and contractor associations.

When is the best time to get shutters installed?

The best time to have shutters installed is when your house is built so that they can be part of the design. If you already have a home without shutters, then get them installed as soon as it is practical to do so. If they are permanently in place on your home, — such as Bahamas shutters, roll-down, accordion, etc. — then practice closing them once a year before hurricane season to make sure everything is in place and in working order.
If they are panels, then check at the beginning of each hurricane season to see that all hardware is available and check each opening to make sure no repairs are required. It is also a good idea to practice installing these panels for a couple of windows or doors prior to each season, to time how long it takes you to install them.
When a hurricane watch is issued, check all mechanisms and hardware again, and perhaps install some of your more difficult shutters. If you are in a potential evacuation zone, and it is going to take you more than 2 to 3 hours to install your shutters, you may want to start the work during the hurricane watch phase. If you are not in an evacuation zone, you should have time during the hurricane warning phase to install your shutters.

What if I can’t afford to get shutters?

The least expensive effective method of protecting windows is probably plywood. If plywood covers are properly installed, they are just as effective, or maybe more effective than commercial shutters. The key is proper thickness and installation. They should be cut, fit, and installed prior to the hurricane season, and then well-marked and stored with hardware for quick installation should a hurricane threaten your area. The time for installation is the same as for shutters mentioned above. You might consider doing a few windows at a time over a long period, or seeking financing to make them affordable. There will still be some people who, for one reason or another, just can’t afford to do either of these. For those, it is like not having insurance, recovering from the disaster will be slow, and they will have to depend on outside help. Putting tape on the windows is not considered worth the effort.

No matter what type of shutter you need contact CAT 5 Shutters, LLC on web at www.cat5shutters.net or call us 561-333-2285 or 305-852-2285

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Get Supplies

Posted by cat5shuttersllc on May 7, 2014

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During and after a hurricane, you may need supplies to keep your family safe and healthy. Remember that a hurricane could cut off your power and water supply. You also may not be able to drive because of damage to your car. Roads may be flooded or blocked.

That’s why it’s best to be prepared — stock up on everything you might need now. Here’s a checklist of what you need:

Food and Medicine
Clean containers for water
At least 5 gallons of water per person (which should be enough to last 3 to 5 days)A 3 to 5 day supply of food that doesn’t go bad (like canned food)Baby food or formula
Prescription medicines
Safety Items
First aid kit and instructions
Fire extinguisherBattery-powered radio
Flashlights
Extra batteries
Sleeping bags or extra blanketsSupplies to make drinking water safe (like iodine tablets or chlorine bleach)Learn more about making drinking water safe.

Personal Care Products
Hand sanitizer
Wet cleaning cloths (like baby wipes) in case you don’t have clean water
Soap
Toothpaste
Tampons and pads
Diapers
Make sure your supplies are stored together in a place that’s easy to reach.

Make an Emergency Car Kit
In case you need to leave quickly during a hurricane, always keep an emergency kit in your car, too. Make sure you include:
Food that doesn’t go bad (like canned food)FlaresJumper cables (sometimes called booster cables)MapsTools, like a roadside emergency kit Learn more about supplies to include in your first aid kit.

A first aid kit and instructionsA fire extinguisherSleeping bagsFlashlight and extra batteriesHaving a GPS — either in your car or on your smartphone — can help during an emergency too.

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Insurance: Filing an insurance claim

Posted by cat5shuttersllc on May 6, 2014

Insurance: Filing an insurance claimTake photos or video of your home to document your belongings for insurance adjusters. A free computer software program, http://www.insurancevault.net , will walk you through what are the key images to take. Make sure images are easily accessible immediately after the hurricane — not solely stored on a computer.

Save copies of receipts, purchase dates, serial numbers.

Start a disaster savings account so that money is available in a worst-case scenario.
Write down the name, address and claims telephone number of your insurance company, which may differ from your agent’s contact information.

Keep this information in a safe place and have access to it if you have to evacuate.

Keep materials such as plywood on hand in case you make temporary repairs after a storm. Take photos of the damage before you make repairs. Keep receipts from your repairs so that your insurance company has documentation to reimburse you.

Document any repairs you make to your house after previous hurricanes. If you don’t, and suffer new damage in the same place, an insurance company could dispute that you ever used the money they paid you to make repairs.

Search for:

Storm 2014

Interactive tracking map

– See more at: http://blogs.palmbeachpost.com/eyeonthestorm/before-the-storm/insurance-claims-inspections-adjusters/#sthash.wNEIqCG1.dpuf

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Hurricane Season Next Month

Posted by cat5shuttersllc on May 2, 2014

Hurricane Season Next MonthBoth the National Hurricane Center and the American Red Cross have developed specific guidelines for Hurricane supply kits. A hurricane survival kit is merely a specialized version of your disaster supply kit. It should include provisions to carry you through a week or two after a storm or other disaster. Our hurricane preparation page includes additional recommendations based on experiences of real people who have been through similar situations. Remember, the more water, food, and other items you have the better off you will be in the event of an emergency. You will be able to assist family and friends if needed.

Some companies include pre-assembled survival kits that include water purification tablets and more. They can be useful in addition to your own kit.

Our own version increases some of their recommendations and includes some additional items that are helpful in our experience.

Remember to print hard copy of any documents you need – instructions, tips or anything in case you have no power.

Water – at least 1 gallon daily per person for 7 to 10 days.

Katrina and Wilma should have emphasized the importance of having sufficient water on hand. Don’t forget some for your pets. Food – at least enough for 3 to 7 days

— non-perishable packaged or canned food / juices
— foods for infants or the elderly
— snack foods (Peanut butter; mixed PBJ; breakfast bars; crackers; canned fruit; raisins; chips;
— non-electric can opener
— cooking tools / fuel
— paper plates / plastic utensils / paper cups
— trash bags and duct tape – useful for clean-up, or patching leaks in an emergency An ax to use if you stay and need to escape from your house – or other uses

Blankets / Pillows, etc.Clothing – seasonal / rain gear/ sturdy shoesFirst Aid Kit / Medicines / Prescription Drugs

Special Items – for babies and the elderlyToiletries / Hygiene items / Moisture wipesBug spray, Cortisone for bug bites Sunscreen & LotionTarp to cover holes if needed.
Bleach Water purification tablets Waterless soap saves water for drinking
Flashlight / BatteriesRadio – Battery operated and NOAA weather radioBattery operated television, with extra batteries.
Cash – Banks and ATMs may not be open or available for extended periods. Make sure you have small bills because it will often be difficult to get change, I you only have a $100 and water is $10 for a case and you are limited to one case, you do not want to have the choice of paying $100 or having no water.
Keys to house, cars, boats etc Toys, Books and GamesImportant documents – in a waterproof container or watertight resealable plastic bag
— insurance, medical records, bank account numbers, Social Security card, etc. Don’t forget your re-entry documents (e.g. stickers or passes). Many barrier islands require some documentation in order to return. Keep important phone number here. You may know them, but a loved one may not.
 Tools – keep a set with you during the storm. A pocket knife, nails, a hammer and rope are important elements. Towels and buckets are useful too if you develop a leak. Vehicle fuel tanks filledPet care items
— proper identification / immunization records / medications
— ample supply of food and water
— a carrier or cage
— muzzle and leash Hurricane TipsIf you can’t get cell reception, move to high ground and you may be able to reach towers that are in working condition.
Have a non-cordless plug in phone (a no-frills, phone that only plugs into the phone outlet and does not need its own power supply). Often phone lines will work, but without power, corldess phones will not work.

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