Next Level is headquartered in the Venice of America, Fort Lauderdale, Florida. We love living in the South Florida sunshine most of the time. The warm sandy beaches and the exciting atmosphere of our city mean that many people visit us or move here. We all enjoy the weather.
Until hurricane season, that is. This week, Irma has been looming in the Atlantic Ocean. While it remains to be seen if the hurricane will hit us, we want everyone to be prepared. These tips and apps will help you in this hurricane season, and all hurricane seasons to come.
The Red Cross is a big organization, and they are here to help you. For hurricane season, we recommend the First Aid and Hurricane apps. The first aid app will give you access to guides on how to deal with some of the most common first aid emergencies. You never know when that may come in handy in an emergency. The hurricane app monitors hurricane conditions in your locale. It follows the entire storm track. If you need to let others know how you are doing even when the power is out, this app is the way to go.
2. The FEMA App
This app does many different actions. You can receive alerts from the National Weather Service for up to five locations, so you can not only be sure of your own safety, but of your loved one’s safety as well. The app has tips on how to survive natural disasters, and will let you make a customizable emergency checklist. If you need to know where open shelters are, the app has a guide. First responders need as much information as you can give them, and this app has a way to send pictures to those who need it.
3. Siren GPS
When you need to let emergency responders know where you are, this is a fantastic app. You input your vitals, and when you send an alert, those who need that information will have it immediately. In addition, you can send out mass notifications to a multitude of people.
4. Get Water
Before a hurricane starts, there is a massive run on water in grocery stores. Unfortunately, sometimes a hurricane brings out the worst in people. When certain unscrupulous people see a horde of people who need water, they may raise the price of water to unreasonable levels.
If there is no water in a store, or if you do not want to reward price gougers and blood suckers, there are alternatives. Most people eschew other liquids like lemonade or soft drinks. While these drinks may not be so useful, you can pour them out and fill the bottles with tap water. The quality of tap water and bottled water is usually not so different. Any water is useful after a hurricane.
5. Take Care of Your Windows and Clear Your Deck
There are a lot of myths out there about how you should treat your windows before a hurricane. It is 100% true that you should shutter your windows in the week leading up to the storm. If you do not have shutters for your windows, you can nail planks to the frame to protect the glass.
Some people think that it is a good idea to open their windows during a storm, so the pressure can equalize. It is impossible to overstate how bad of an idea this is. Do not ever open your windows while the hurricane is even close to you. Additionally, some people think that they only need to shutter the windows in the same direction where the storm is coming from. This is a bad idea. Hurricanes send airborne projectiles flying in all directions, meaning that no window is safe.
As an addendum to this, secure all loose chairs, tables, and other items you have outside. Hurricane Katrina had sustained windspeeds of up to 175 mph. At that speed, everything becomes dangerous when whipped through the air. That is especially true of substantial and heavy objects. Bring everything inside.
6. Get Cash
Hurricanes knock the power out. This means that you need to have a way to pay for things other than your credit card. Before the lights go down, it is wise to pay a visit to the ATM and grab as much cash as you think you will need for a little while. Remember, you will have no access to your money in electronic form after a hurricane hits.
Gas Buddy is a wonderful tool that shows who has gas, and when. When you fill up your tank, or alternatively learn of a lack of gas, you can report it for everyone to see. It is updated fairly frequently, and if you find a place with gas, you can help your community out.