October 29, 2012

More notes on hurricane survival

Autumn view of New York City.
photo by Katherine Ellington
Are you prepared for disaster? My notes on storm survival for Hurricane Irene Sandy are updated here considering some of the challenges for those living in the New York City area and in the multi-state path of the storm.  As we wait out the unpredictable, uncertain intentions of this storm:
  • Use your down time to share meaningfully with family, friends and neighbors too.  It’s an intense time so avoid conflict and drama — now is the time to work together.
  • Listen to news reports, but you can turn down the volume to find some peace throughout the day.
  • Check-in on family and friends while the lines are clear and working. Mobile phones and land lines may be inaccessible.

Hurricane severity is a mix of rains and ear-popping wind that may cause all kinds of unimaginable damage and harm not always obvious.  For example, the stress of the storm may raise blood pressure or a major power outage that last for days could also shut down our water supply because pumps (including gasoline) run on electricity.  Here a few suggestions:
  • Shower/bathe before the storm just in case the water goes. 
  • Put on/sleep in some comfortable clothes just in case you have to leave your house in a hurry. 
  • Don't skip meals. It's a good time to cook food from the freezer. 
  • Don't wander around; the calm before the storm is a dangerous time.

Here's a live look at Hurricane Sandy:
Please note that power outages and damages have to be reported to agencies to be resolved.  Utility companies don't know immediately unless you call in. Be prepared to contact:
  • Con Edison for power outages as well as lines down in your neighborhood.
  • Phone, cable and other utility companies should also be contacted directly by residents if there is trouble.
  • In New York City call 311 to report trouble and for help.

Other reading:
What to do during a hurricane is a guide from FEMA with up-to-date information.

Please share your storm survival ideas, reflections and/or comments.

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