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Here in Texas, summer storms happen whether you are ready or not, especially these last couple of years and when there’s a big one? It usually makes national news. We can get hit pretty hard with not only thunderstorms during the summer, but also flash flooding, tornadoes and even hurricanes if you’re in the “right” part of the state. Needless to say, we prepare for those storms because if you’re not ready? You may just find yourself in a very, very bad situation. Preparing for summer storms before they happen isn’t too hard and honestly, it’s a lot like preparing for any situation, but you’ve got to be willing to actually do the work involved.
When you first start to prepare for summer storms, you’ll want to determine what types of storms you’re actually looking at so that you can prepare for only the ones that may affect your family. After all, it doesn’t make much sense to prepare for hurricanes if you live so far inland that you’ll never get one. Take a look at what type of weather your area actually gets during the summer. Do you get a lot of rain making flooding a concern? Do you live in tornado alley making a twister your biggest concern?
Preparing for Summer Storms Before They Happen
Once you know that little tidbit, you can start making your actual summer storm preparations. Each family will have different needs that they need to address but the ideas below can give you a great place to start.
Prepare for summer storms before they happen
Preparing for power loss before it happens is the only sure fire way to make sure that your family will still have light if the power goes out. Keeping things like candles and water-proof matches, flashlights and even a propane camping lantern on hand will give you a head start on any dark nights. If you’ve got kids, you might want to consider a “character” flashlight for them. Having their favorite “friends” nearby may make the dark a bit easier to handle for them.
Stock up on water to prepare for summer storms before they happen
When it comes to preparing for summer storms before they happen, you’ll need to make absolutely certain that you have more than enough safe, potable (drinkable) water on hand. You can do this two ways. First, get a filtered water bottle that will filter out not only for taste but for impurities too. The second is to store bottled water. Why?
There are a lot of ways that a storm can cause your water supply to suddenly become bad. In 2008, the city that my Emma and I lived in had some major river flooding. River water had gotten into the city water supply and suddenly there was 100,000+ people without access to clean water. Tornadoes, hurricanes, drought or any other major storm issue can all cause your water to no longer be drinkable. The general rule of thumb is 1 gallon, per person, per day plus extra for each pet.
Build a 72-hour emergency kit for your family members to prepare for summer storms
Having a 72-hour kit on hand (also called a bug out bag) is a must have for every one in your family. Don’t let the idea that you’ll need to “build” one scare you since it’s fairly easy to learn how to build an emergency kit on a budget. You’ll want to make sure that you include 3 days worth of clothing, food (both regular and a few days worth of freeze dried foods), and water plus copies of your ID’s and a bit of cash. Having a flashlight in here is a great idea too and you may also want to consider picking up a LifeStraw Personal Water Filter to keep in your 72-hour kit as well. For the ladies, make sure you’re keeping feminine products in yours too since you never know when an emergency will happen. I highly recommend cloth for a lot of reasons and if you’re looking for a great brand, Tree Hugger is a great place to start! It’s my new favorite place to get them!
Store blankets when preparing for summer storms
I’ve said it before but I’m going to say this again. You absolutely do need to be storing extra blankets for an emergency. You never know what will happen in a summer storm and the last thing that you’ll want is to end up cold and wet or in serious need of comfort. Having an extra blanket or three on hand can help with those situations. They also give you the chance to build a barrier between your head and anything that might damage you, to block winds a bit and more. Make sure that you store them in a vacuum sealed blanket bag or tote and that you keep them in a dry place so that you don’t end up with mildew or mold issues during an emergency.
Make sure you have an alternative method of cooking when preparing for summer storms
If the power is out (or the natural gas if you cook with it), you’ll need a way to cook food for your family. This can be using cast iron to cook on an open fire, a charcoal grill, propane grill or whatever you want. This is especially important if you have kids since they will thrive on “the normal” parts of daily life. Being able to feed them at least semi-normally will help keep them calm.
Prepare your home for summer storms
Finally, if you live in an area that frequently gets high winds or worse during the summer, you’ll want to do some preparations to your home as well. These should always be done after you take care of what you will need for your family, but consider things such as plywood sheets for the windows to help keep wind and debris out, blue tarps for helping to cover other areas, and other emergency preparations in that general area. They may not save your home from all damage but they will help lessen the damage it takes and that? Can be the difference between having a home to come back to and staying in a hotel for weeks.
Do you have any other summer storm preparation tips? I’d love to hear them as well as your experiences with any severe weather during the summer! After all, the biggest preparation that we can all do is to learn from each other.
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