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Protecting Your Home > Emergency Actions

If you have time before a flood:


  • Turn off all utilities at the main power switch and close the main gas valve if evacuation appears necessary.
  • Move valuables, such as papers, furs, jewelry, and clothing to upper floors or higher elevations.
    • House deeds, renter’s lease, social security cards, prescriptions, birth certificates, and other identification documents should be kept together for evacuation in an accessible place.
  • Bring outdoor possessions, such as lawn furniture, grills and trash cans inside, or tie them down securely.
  • Throughout the year trim and cut back any tree limbs that could cause damage during a storm.


Preparing your Home for Disaster:


  • Installing permanent storm shutters or barriers over doors and windows on a home ensures the best storm protection.
  • Winds during strong storms and hurricanes can cause debris and materials to pummel a home, breaking through windows and doors, causing both structural damage and water damage by exposing a home to the outside elements.
  • The best time to prepare a home is well before a storm threat, during the actual design process of the home so shutters and barriers can be retrofitted into the actual design of the home, but mitigating a home for hurricanes can also be done long after a home has been built.
  • Windows and doors can be boarded up using plywood, preferably a marine grade or exterior grade wood with 5/8 inch thickness or greater. Taping windows does little to nothing during a major storm.
  • For a guide on how to create window covers:
  • If nothing else, remove valuables away from windows and doors and try to keep items in a room without outdoor access or an upper story if possible.
  • If there is enough time, remove any perishables from the fridge or freezer to keep foods from spoiling during a power outage. 
  • Click here for more information about storm shutters and preparing your home.
  • Click here for more information about retrofitting your home.
  • Click here for more information about preparing for hurricanes.