Monday, September 11, 2017

What to do after IRMA is gone

Staying safe after the hurricane is your first priority.

St. Petersburg, Fl
Opinion by: E. Eugene Webb PhD
Author: In Search of Robin, So You Want to Blog.

If you have evacuated and are returning to your home or just venturing outside after the storm passes, here are some suggestions to keep you safe.

Check out this Red Cross Link Be Red Cross Ready

From the Red Cross site:
 “Preparing to return home after evacuating will keep you safer while inspecting and cleaning up the damage to your home. Before traveling, ensure local officials have declared that it’s safe to enter your community and that you have the supplies you will need. Follow the suggestions below for returning to, inspecting and cleaning your home.”

Items to Take When Returning Home:
·         Government-issued photo ID and proof of address
·         Important phone numbers
·         Bottled water and non-perishable foods
·         First aid kit
·         Cleanser/ hand cleaning gel for personal use
·         Hygiene products and toilet paper
·         Insect repellent and sunscreen
·         Long sleeved shirts, long pants, sturdy waterproof boots and work gloves
·         Flashlight, portable radio and extra batteries
·         Cameras for photos of damage for insurance claims
·         Continue listening to a NOAA Weather Radio or the local news for the latest updates.

Things to watch for:
·         Stay alert for extended rainfall and subsequent flooding even after the hurricane or tropical storm has ended.
·         If you evacuated, return home only when officials say it is safe.
·         Drive only if necessary and avoid flooded roads and washed out bridges.
·         Keep away from loose or dangling power lines and report them immediately to the power company.
·         Stay out of any building that has water around it.
·         Inspect your home for damage. Take pictures of damage, both of the building and its contents, for insurance purposes.
·         Use flashlights in the dark. Do NOT use candles.
·         Avoid drinking or preparing food with tap water until you are sure it’s not contaminated.
·         Check for smells of leaking gas
·         Watch out for an increased presence of rats and other rodents which may feed off spoiled food or animal carcasses. Contact animal control authorities for information on how to dispose dead animals found on your property.
·         Check refrigerated food for spoilage. If in doubt, throw it out.
·         Wear protective clothing and be cautious when cleaning up to avoid injury.
·         Don't wade into the water. Standing floodwater on your property may hide a host of dangers including live electrical lines and fecal matter from overflowed sewage lines.
·         Do not let children play in any water or touch objects that may have been exposed to possibly contaminated water.
·         Watch animals closely and keep them under your direct control.
·         Watch your back. Use teams of two or more people to remove debris and heavy objects that weigh more than 50 pounds.

Take care of yourself:
·         Stay Hydrated
·         Take your medications
·         Take frequent breaks 
·         Wear sunscreen
·         Wear gloves, long pants and boots when removing debries
·         If a task looks dangerous call for help
·         Don’t try to do everything in one day

Finally, don’t take any unnecessary chances. Nothing at your home is worth a serious injury or your life.

Think before you act.

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Disclosures: Contributor to Rick Baker for Mayor Campaign 

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