Last week, Hawai‘i residents were advised that hurricane “Guillermo” weakened to a tropical depression and the last time I checked, Hilda was downgraded to a tropical storm and will pass to the south bringing rain.
Hurricanes can be devastating when they make landfall but, luckily more often than not, they lose their strength before reaching the islands.
It’s inevitable that we will endure many more reports of hurricanes heading our way as the season stretches from June until the end of November. At times, it seems as though media overly dramatizes the early reports that come in from various tsunami reporting services but, it’s always best to heed all warnings and to be prepared.
Everyone should have an emergency supply kit handy and I use the following list I kept that was posted by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Ready Campaign a couple of years ago.
1 gallon of water per person per day for at least three days
At least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
Mess kits, paper cups, plates and plastic utensils, paper towels
Infant formula and/or pet food, if needed
Sleeping bag or warm blanket for each person in the household
Complete change of clothing including a long sleeved shirt, long pants and sturdy shoes for each person
Personal hygiene items, such as toothbrushes, toilet paper and feminine hygiene supplies
Battery-powered or hand-cranked radio
Whistle to signal for help
Dust mask to filter contaminated air
Plastic sheeting and duct tape to make a shelter
Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties
Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
Matches in a waterproof container
Paper and pencil
Prescription medications and glasses
Documents such as copies of insurance policies, identification and bank records in waterproof, portable container
Cash or traveler’s checks and change
Emergency reference material such as a first-aid guide or information from www.ready.gov
Household chlorine bleach and medicine dropper (make a disinfectant from 9 parts water to 1 part bleach; or treat water by using 16 drops bleach per gallon of water). Do not use scented, color safe or bleaches with added cleaners.
Books, games, puzzles or other activities for children
For hurricane news and updates, the National Weather Service, Central Pacific Hurricane Center has excellent information. Visit http://www.prh.noaa.gov/cphc/.