Thursday, October 6, 2016
Kimberly's Hurricane Preparedness Tips
I'm a veteran of hurricanes and tropical storms, having lived on the Texas gulf coast my whole life. And I've learned a few things on my own. First of all, you will never have enough ice. Two weeks before hurricane Ike, I had a premonition that something big was coming. I'm weird like that. I emptied my lower kitchen cabinets of all tupperware and stainless bowls, filled them with water and froze them in the deep freeze. Huge blocks of ice that only lasted about a day and a half in the post hurricane heat. However, it was a huge help since the power was out at my house for ten days. At least for the first two days, we were able to salvage our meat and milk. The next thing I learned is that bread and water are the first things to fly off the store shelves, along with batteries and booze. Seriously. Booze is a big hurricane seller. If you buy bread, get commercially sliced bread, not bakery bread, as the bakery bread doesn't have enough preservatives to keep it from souring in the heat should you lose power and your air conditioning. Even after the stores reopened a few days later, there was no fresh bread. I bought flour tortilla mix and we ate everything taco style. Next, get the water. During Ike, it was 3 days before the National Guard rolled into town with water, ice and MRE's. We'd already exhausted our supplies by that time. My next tip is to AVOID buying salty canned foods. Tuna and sardines are okay but not hash, Spam, too many soups, or canned meats. Yes, they are convenient BUT the salt will make you even thirstier and you will bloat. Salty sweat ain't pretty, folks. Next, sugary snacks like candy, cookies, etc, will also make you thirsty. Opt for apples, oranges and greener bananas that can ripen over a few days. Any kind of fruit that can sit on your counter for a week without rotting. These sweet foods will keep much better, even without refrigeration. Canned milk is well....icky...but it will last and you can use it for cereal, coffee, etc. Better than nothing if you like your milk. Also, don't forget pet food, your medicines (get refills if you can), a full tank of gas in each car, plenty of flashlights and batteries. Avoid candles as they are simply too dangerous. Make sure people have your number and can call or text you. People will be worried if they can't get in contact. Finally, don't do anything stupid. If you are told to evacuate, get your butt out. No property is worth losing your life over. And for the love of all that is holy, please do not lose your head at the gas pump, grocery store, etc. Yes, everyone's nerves are on edge but you are no more important than they are. Everyone is in this together. Work together, help each other, and keep your emotions in check. Be smart and stay safe.
Posted by Kimberly Ivey at 12:15 PM