Hurricane checklist

April 21, 2013 

If a huge force of nature with the energy of several hundred hydrogen bombs comes barreling toward the Lowcountry, residents should be prepared for decisions and deadlines.

Here are some guidelines:


  • Put together your hurricane kit.
  • Decide where to go in the event of a hurricane evacuation and how to get there.
  • Assign each family member a task, to cut down on chaos.
  • Make arrangements for pets -- American Red Cross shelters won't take them.
  • Catalog your possessions.
  • Photograph valuables. Make sure you have enough film or disk space for "before" and "after" photos. There are several online tools, including smartphone and tablet apps, that can assist you.
  • Have adequate insurance. Read your policy.
  • Keep a list of emergency phone numbers nearby.
  • Keep family records and documents accessible and protected.
  • If you have a boat, consider safe anchorage options.
  • Purchase a cooler that keeps things cold for up to five or six days.
  • Social Security check recipients should use direct deposit, the U.S. Treasury Department recommends. That helps ensure seamless delivery of federal benefit payments.


  • Three- to seven-day supply of food and water; one gallon of water per person and pet per day; nonperishable packaged or canned food
  • Manual can opener and utensils
  • First aid kit, medications
  • Special items for infants and the elderly
  • Toiletries and hygiene items
  • Extra clothing, blankets, pillows, etc.
  • Flashlight and batteries
  • Battery-powered radio
  • Cash
  • Tools
  • Keys
  • Road maps, including evacuation routes
  • Baby supplies
  • Blankets/sleeping bags
  • Games and books
  • Plastic trash bags with ties and large zip-close plastic bags
  • Jumper cables
  • Tire repair kit
  • If you plan on staying in an emergency shelter, take linens with you.
  • A copy of this newspaper section might prove helpful, too.
  • Make sure your car is filled with gas.
  • Refill prescription drugs.
  • Have cash or travelers checks available.
  • Pack irreplaceable items, such as photo albums, to take with you.
  • Board up windows.
  • Put loose outdoor items in storage.
  • Check for loose gutters and spouts.
  • Move valuables to higher levels.
  • Move furniture away from windows and cover with plastic.
  • Remove valuables, such as furniture and rugs, from floor of house.
  • Secure windows and doors from the inside.
  • Trim dead branches.
  • Anchor small sheds.
  • Put chlorine in pool; protect filter motor.
  • Dangerous chemicals, insecticides, herbicides or gasoline should be put in watertight containers and in a high spot.
  • Store drinking water in clean bathtubs, jugs and bottles. You should have enough water on hand for seven days.
  • Program emergency contact numbers.
  • Designate someone out of the area as a central contact.
  • Make certain all family members know whom to contact if they become separated.
  • Keep phone batteries charged at all times.
  • Forward your home number to your wireless number in the event of an evacuation.
  • Often in an emergency, text messages will go through quicker than voice calls.
  • Turn off electricity at main breaker and shut off gas.
  • Towels or rugs should be put around openings to reduce seepage.
  • Lock all doors.
  • If there's something that's really valuable to you, stick it in the dishwasher and close the door.
  • Register yourself as "safe and well" at Concerned family and friends can search for their loved one's name, an "as of" date and the messages selected.

The Island Packet is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service