*This Hurricane Preparedness conversation is sponsored by Verizon but as always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Sincerely Onyi.
‘How are we going to get to the hospital?’ ‘Are you prepared to deliver this baby?’
This time last year, I was consumed by these thoughts. Hurricane Harvey hit Houston without mercy. Our streets were flooded and as water crept closer to the house we watched the worst of the devastation on TV. Across the city, water covered highways and homes. Volunteers were going down streets by boat, attempting to rescue people from homes that had taken on too much water. Imagining all that was lost during this time is devastating. At category 4 strength, Harvey brought significant damage to the Gulf Coast. Areas like Port Aransas, TX are still being rebuilt. We decided to visit Port Aransas beach to celebrate the first birthday of our Hurricane Harvey baby. Although we enjoyed ourselves watching the beauty of the beach, the buildings that remained damaged from Harvey’s force were a somber reminder that we should have a hurricane preparedness list for next time.
That is why I am happy to partner with Verizon to remind us all that if we fail to plan, we plan to fail. It’s important to craft a communications plan during a hurricane. While Verizon wireless always prepares their network for extreme weather, they are especially attentive during hurricane season to ensure we’re ready if a major storm hits.
“During Harvey, the line between wants and needs was starkly drawn for us. Looking back, “communication” was no doubt a critical need during (and after) the storm – from pleads to be rescued across social media, to enabling families to maintain contact between shelters” – Verizon
August through September are the most active Hurricane months so make sure to prepare yourself ahead of time.
Tips To Maintaining Communication During A Hurricane
- Have a portable charger like this one that remains charged and used only in emergencies.
- Ensure all battery-powered devices are fully charged before the storm hits. This includes wireless phones and smartphones, laptops, tablets, flashlights and radios.
- Get waterproof cases for you phone like this one.
- Program your smartphone to receive emergency alerts. Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEAs) are free wireless notifications that are delivered to your mobile device with messages from local/national public safety organizations.
- Maintain a list of emergency phone numbers like rescue agencies, power companies, insurance providers, and family, friends and coworkers.
- Backup your information on a cloud as soon as possible.
- Download weather apps and turn on alerts that provide you with information such as radar images, forecasts, and severe storm warnings.
- Download apps like Firechat for Bluetooth communication if wireless service is unavailable.
- Check if your network and device support wifi-calling. If you use Verizon Wireless head over to this page to see if your plan is eligible and your phone is compatible.
- Practice memorizing important phone numbers as a family in case of an emergency.
- Other Tips To Prepare Your Home For A Hurricane
- Turn the refrigerator to its coldest setting in case power goes off. Use a cooler to keep from opening the doors on the freezer or refrigerator.
- Get a full tank of gas in one car.
- Store important documents — passports, Social Security cards, birth certificates, deeds — in a watertight container.
Additional List Of Supplies For Hurricane Preparedness
- A three-day supply of water
- Three days of food
- A first aid kit
- A camera (to document storm damage)
Verizon takes Hurricane preparedness very serious with mobile cell towers that can quickly respond to emergencies nationwide. They have a well thought out plan on how to keep all of us safe during a natural disaster.
Learn more about hurricane preparedness and Verizon’s efforts to prepare communities for emergency situations HERE.
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