As of June 1, the 2023 hurricane season is officially upon us. To help locals protect themselves this season, Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) is urging customers to make storm preparations with the help of the 2023 Residential Storm Tips.
Read on for expert recommendations to help you stay safe before a storm threatens and preparing for an approaching storm:
Before a storm threatens
- Determine if your home or business is in a flood and/or evacuation zone and review evacuation routes.
- Develop your emergency plan and review it with your family.
- Photograph or record your home—inside and out—for insurance purposes.
- Determine your backup power source, or make arrangements to relocate if a storm warning is issued and someone in your home is dependent on electric-powered, life-sustaining medical equipment.
- Clear tree and vegetation debris. Trash pickup will be suspended when a hurricane warning is issued. Click here for more information on tree trimming policies.
- Do not attempt to trim vegetation growing on or near overhead power lines. Only hire qualified professionals to trim trees and other vegetation near power lines.
Preparing for an approaching storm
- Turn off and unplug any unnecessary electrical equipment.
- Turn off all swimming pool pumps and filters, and wrap them in waterproof materials.
- Set your refrigerator and freezer to their coldest settings ahead of time to keep food fresh longer in the event of a power outage.
- Note the location of power lines before working on a ladder. Be sure that ladders or scaffolds are far enough away so that you and the ends of the tools used don’t come within 10 feet of power lines.
- Turn off and unplug televisions before lowering an antenna or satellite dish. Avoid power lines.
- Store important documents—insurance policies, health cards, birth certificates, Social Security cards, important phone numbers, medications lists, and a copy of your FPL bill—in a waterproof container.
- Bookmark this page and save 1-800-4-OUTAGE (1-800-468-8243) to your cell phone to report and check the status of power restorations.
- Contact local emergency management office if you or anyone you know has special needs in case of evacuations.
- Fill up your car with gas and fill propane tanks if you plan to use a grill for cooking immediately after a storm.
- Prepare to be self-sufficient for an extended period of time, according to emergency operations officials. Stock up on nonperishable food, extra batteries, medications, baby supplies, and pet food.
- Purchase bottled water. The American Red Cross recommends one gallon of water per person per day for up to 14 days.
- Keep a battery-operated radio and a two-week supply of fresh batteries.
- Check emergency equipment, such as flashlights, battery-operated radios, extension cords, cell phones and chargers, and emergency generators.
- Charge your cell phone and keep it ready by obtaining portable chargers.
- Install an approved hurricane shutter system over windows and doors, or have alternate coverings such as plywood.
- Bring outside objects inside, fasten doors and windows, cover valuables and furniture with plastic, and move away from windows.
For more storm and safety tips, click here.