Before the Storm
Prepare Your Home
❒ Board up windows and close all storm shutters. Secure and reinforce the roof, doors and garage door.
❒ Bring loose, lightweight objects such as patio furniture, garbage cans and bicycles inside.
❒ Anchor objects that would be unsafe to bring inside (e.g., gas grills and propane tanks).
❒ Trim or remove damaged trees and limbs close enough to fall on structures.
❒ Secure loose rain gutters and down spouts and clear any clogged areas or debris to prevent water damage to your property.
❒ Purchase a portable generator or install a whole-house generator for use during power outages.
❒ Keep alternative power sources, such as a portable generator, outside, at least 20 feet away from the house, and protected from moisture.
❒ Document the condition of your home prior to the storm.
Prepare Your Business
❒ Document employee responsibilities and roles before a hurricane strikes and review with each employee.
❒ Conduct a drill to ensure staff members comprehend their roles and test your emergency plans. Follow up with an-after action report and lessons-learned session.
❒ Contact your vendors to understand their preparedness plans and how a disaster will impact your supply chain.
❒ Move computers and other Information Technology systems away from large windows and doors.
❒ Relocate valuables and IT systems to the upper level of your facility or to a more secure location if needed.
❒ Ensure vital records are protected: analyze your off-site backup record storage, place valuable documentation and digital storage media in a waterproof, fireproof box.
❒ Cover all doors and windows.
❒ Explore purchasing a flood insurance policy for your business.
Local Emergency Management Offices
Essex - 804.443.3347
Lancaster - 804.436.3553
Northumberland - 804.580.5221
Richmond County - 804.333.5089
Westmoreland - 804.493.0130
• Secure your personal property and business; remove household chemicals from the garage floor and underneath your kitchen sink. Floodwater mixed with chemicals is hazardous to you and your pet’s health.
• Pack your emergency kit, critical documentation and valuables, and review your emergency communications plan.
• Keep your fuel tank filled and withdraw cash from an ATM to have on hand for necessities including: food, bottled water, medication, fuel, and lodging expenses.
• Know when to go: Identify your evacuation zone and stay alert by using your NOAA weather radio, FM/AM radio, smart phone apps, and by listening to local media and local, state or federal officials.
• Do not walk through moving water or drive into flooded areas. Do not camp or park your vehicle along streams, rivers or creeks, particularly during threatening conditions.
• Six inches of water will reach the bottom of most cars causing loss of control and possible stalling; a foot of water will float many vehicles.
• Monitor airline and train travel for delays and cancellations, especially if these modes of transportation are part of your evacuation plan.
• Make lodging arrangements prior to or at the start of your evacuation by asking to stay with friends or family or by making hotel arrangements in a region that is not under threat from the storm.
• Use apps on your smart phone that identify the latest traffic patterns, gas stations with available fuel and hotels with vacancies.
• Keep your out-of-town emergency contact, family members and friends informed of your location and progress throughout the evacuation process.
• Consistently monitor local media coverage and listen to local and state officials.