The Hurricane Survival Test
1) Hurricanes cause tremendous destruction to homes and businesses. But along and near the coast, what is the single biggest threat to life from these storms?
- A. rain
B. high winds
C. storm surge
Answer: C. -- Every hurricane brings dangers in the form of high winds and tornadoes. But the worst killer comes from the sea in the form of storm surge -- a huge dome of water from 10 to 40 feet high, that crashes into the coastline when a hurricane makes landfall.
Historically nine out of ten hurricane victims die because of the storm surge. While storm surge is the biggest threat to life on the coast, inland flooding can claim many more lives. High winds can also cause considerable damage far inland.
2) To prevent or reduce damage to your home, what kind of preparation can be made to your home before a hurricane hits?
Answer: All are correct. -- The design and construction of many homes may not be adequate to offer safe shelter during a storm. If possible, have a contractor check roof trusses, the gabled end of the roof, and roof decking. If hurricane force winds break into your home through a window or door, the force of the wind could lift all or part of the roof off your home causing tremendous damage.
All windows that do not meet impact standards, including skylights, should be reinforced by a permanent shutter system, or by simply covering them with at least one half-to three -quarter inch thick plywood sheets attached to your home by anchor screws. Tape does not prevent windows from breaking.
Lawn furniture and other outside objects should be secured. High winds can turn harmless objects into missiles of destruction during a storm.
3) Most residential hurricane wind damage starts with wind entry through:
Answer: C. -- Approximately 80 percent of residential hurricane wind damage starts with wind entry through garage doors. Garage doors and tracks should be reinforced with center supports.
4) How can you minimize damage to your home and maximize your chance of recovery before a storm strikes?
Answer : A,C,D. -- To make insurance claims easier to file, make a record of your personal property by taking photographs or videos of your possessions. Review your current insurance policy to make sure you are adequately covered for wind damage and flooding.
Also, consider buying flood insurance through the National Flood Insurance Program, even if you don't live in a designated federal flood zone. Emergency management officials warn that many neighborhoods are vulnerable to flooding after heavy summer rains.
Flood insurance is a special, separate policy, but it can be purchased along with your homeowner's policy from the same office or agent. Your life will be a lot easier and safer if you take these steps now & not when a hurricane is approaching -- then it's too late. The Federal Emergency Management Agency urges you to BE FLOOD ALERT.
5) In preparing for a storm, which of these items should NOT be in your supplies?
Answer: B. -- Candles and kerosene lamps can cause a fire, and the fire department may not be able to reach you during the storm. So don't use candles in an emergency.
If the power goes out in your home, use a flashlight or battery powered lamp. Flashlights, a battery-powered radio, and extra batteries are absolute necessities in your hurricane survival kit. Be safe with battery-powered energy.
The Red Cross also recommends you have one gallon of bottled water per person per day for three days and double that amount if you live in a warmer climate.
6) If you live in a high-rise condominium or on the beach, it's better to stay at home rather than evacuate.
Answer: False. -- Residents of high rise condominiums, even those located inland away from the treat of storm serge, should know that winds are generally stronger at higher elevations. They should go to interior stairwells or rooms on the second or third floors of the building, and if in an evacuation zone, evacuate as directed by local officials. Glass doors and windows may get blown out of their castings.
If your building is not constructed with impact resistant windows and doors, get shutters or other protection from high winds and flying debris for all your glass windows and doors. Know the route to the nearest stairs; elevators may not work during a storm. If you live on the beach and you're in an evacuation zone, you must evacuate because the storm poses a major threat to coastal structures.
7) You should evacuate your home or apartment if:
Answers: A, C, D. -- You must immediately evacuate your home to an inland location if local emergency management officials announce an evacuation and you live in that evacuation zone. A mobile home is particularly vulnerable to wind and water damage due to its shape and light weight. If you are elderly or have special needs, contact your local emergency management office to find out about special transportation and shelters.
8) If you must evacuate, what should you bring with you?
Answer: All of the above -- Create a hurricane preparedness checklist: bring your important papers, identification, credit cards, prescription medicines, bottled water, canned foods, blankets, sleeping bags and a change of clothing. In addition, you may want to pack a first aid kit, flashlights and extra batteries, baby food and supplies and a favorite book or game to help pass the time.
9) To ensure your pet's safety during a storm You should tranquilize them.
Never tranquilize your pets, they must be as alert as possible to survive a storm. To help them stay safe, take your pets to a predetermined boarding place, public shelters do not allow pets.
If you are evacuating to a hotel or to the homes of friends and family away from the evacuation zone, make plans to bring your pets with you. Make sure they are wearing their rabies and ID tags and have plenty of food and water for them.
10) After a hurricane has passed, there are still hazards to avoid. They may include:
Many deaths and injuries often occur in the clean up phase after a hurricane has passed. Beware of downed power lines; take care when clearing fallen trees and yard debris. Water may be unsafe to drink because of broken water and sewer lines, and snakes and insects may pose problems in the event of high water.