Preparing for High Winds

tree-14340_1280Strong winds can be a nuisance as well as a life-threatening, potentially devastating situation for many. For people who live in rural areas, a strong windstorm can disrupt their lives for days, weeks and in some situations, months after the storm blows through. Downed power lines are obviously a major issue, but it can be so much more than that. For those who have homesteads, your entire life gets tossed around when those winds tear through. Barns, gardens and even livestock can be severely impacted after a windstorm.

Strong winds are unlike any other seasonal storms. You can get a windstorm any season. Usually, the winds are accompanied by either snow, rain, hail or even lightning. In any scenario, it is a recipe for disaster. The winds can destroy buildings by blowing off roofs or dropping trees and other debris on top of the structures. There is little you can do in the moment, which means a home being flooded and all of the supplies and furnishings inside being damaged or destroyed.key-west-86025_1280

As part of your preparations, it is important to prepare for strong winds, no matter where you live. It is a fact the weather is getting more extreme. New records are being established all around the world. It is best to prepare for anything and hope for the best.

Fortunately, our weather forecasters can give us an idea of when a windstorm is headed our way, which gives you hours, if not days to prepare. The following list includes some of the things you will want to do to get ready for a serious windstorm.

*Take a walk around your property and cut down any dead tree limbs that will likely turn into missiles in a windstorm. Cut heavy branches that could fall and hit your home or any other outbuildings.

*Take a few minutes to inspect your roof. Tighten down loose shingles now. If you have a metal roof, make sure it is all secure.

*Put lawn furniture in the garage or tie it down. It takes very little to blow chairs and tables across the patio and possibly right through glass windows and doors.

*Secure any livestock fencing. A downed fence could spell disaster if your animals get out.

*Prepare for an extended power outage. Have flashlights, generator and water on standby.

*Close the blinds or curtains on the windows if you don’t have shutters. This can help prevent glass from being blown inside if the windows are struck by flying debris.

Don’t let the next windstorm take you by surprise. Be ready, just in case the storm turns into a record-setting event.

When Your Preps are Threatened

thunderstorm-567678_640We have all experienced the wrath of Mother Nature on some scale at one time or another. She can be a violent, temperamental beast and strike without warning. In some cases, we are fortunate enough to get a little inkling of what she is up to thanks to modern technology and various imaging tools. This week, it is Hurricane Matthew storming across the Atlantic and wreaking havoc as it goes.

For preppers along the south eastern coastline, it has to make you a little worried for your stockpile. For those not in the direct path of the hurricane, it should make you think a little harder about how you will secure your own stockpile in case a natural disaster heads your way. What happens if you have to evacuate? Do you have a backup plan?

Your stockpile is meant to be used in the case of a natural disaster, like a hurricane, so you need to make sure it will weather the storm with you. That means you need to do everything you can to make sure your stockpile is safe from the weather.

  • Store your food in 5-gallon buckets with lids that lock on tight. This will help protect your food from any water damage that may happen in a flood. If your roof is damaged in a hurricane, the buckets will keep your food dry.
  • Secure your shelving units to the wall with anchors. You don’t want your shelves to fall forward, possibly popping the lids off buckets, bursting cans or breaking jars.
  • Add a piece of 1×2 or a thick rope across your shelves to keep things from sliding off if there is an earthquake or even strong enough winds. If your home is seriously damaged, you want the majority of your supplies to be okay.hurricane-67581_640
  • Put your food storage somewhere that is fairly secure and well-supported. If you are using a root cellar or basement, make sure major flooding won’t be an issue. This applies to underground shelters as well. If it is in a spare room, put plywood over the windows, just in case the glass breaks.
  • If you can, put a tarp over your shelves stocked with food and secure with ropes or bungee cords. This is just another layer of protection for your supplies. It may also make it easier to find if you need to dig through the rubble.

While you can’t control Mother Nature, you can take steps to protect your investment. If you weren’t able to evacuate and an area is hard hit, you are going to need those supplies They will be extremely valuable. Every layer of protection you add will help.

 

Shelter in Place or Evacuate

Depending on the emergency, you may need to “shelter in place” or evacuate. You should have a plan for each scenario and make sure your family is familiar with that plan.

Evacuation

When you are ordered to evacuate an area, that isn’t the best time to figure out your game plan. And the best evacuation plan is utilized before the evacuation order takes place.

First, learn what dangers are likely to lead to an evacuation order in your area. Is you are prone to flooding? Hurricanes? Wildfires? Do you know where you will go? Continue reading