The world was pummeled by the COVID pandemic and a barrage of severe tropical storms and hurricanes in 2020, and a record number of 30 named storms. Unfortunately, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), has forecast another above-average storm season in 2021.
According to USA Today, “An average season typically spawns seven hurricanes and peaks in August and September. If predictions hold true, it will be a record sixth consecutive year of above-normal activity.”
NOAA has predicted 13 to 20 named storms will develop, which includes tropical storms with wind speeds of 39 mph or higher.
“Storms become hurricanes when winds reach 74 mph. Of the predicted hurricanes, three to five could be major, packing wind speeds of 111 mph or higher,” the USA Today report continued.
In as much as our little slice of west coast paradise has been spared the brutal consequences of the bulk of tropical storms and hurricanes, seniors in Pasco and Pinellas Counties should prepare for severe storms in 2021.
Hurricane season begins June 1st and spans the next five-six months, depending on Mother Nature. Here are some of the best ideas I could find to help seniors prepare for a severe weather event.
Hurricane Preparedness Checklist for Seniors
- Enough water for three days in the event of an evacuation, and a two-week supply for your home to bathe, brush your teeth, soak dentures, etc. One gallon per person per day is recommended. Seniors must stay clean and hydrated!
- Store plenty of preferred non-perishable food items that require no cooking, along with paper products and disposable utensils. Seniors must eat!
- Make sure to have at least a seven-day supply of medications, medical supplies and a stocked first aid kit. Seniors must stay on track with their medications!
- Extra personal hygiene and sanitation items, like toilet paper, garbage bags, paper towels and disinfecting wipes, to name a few, should be readily on hand. Seniors must keep their bodies and homes clean!
- Plenty of batteries to operate flashlights, radios, battery-operated fans, or whatever you need that requires batteries. Seniors don’t need to be out of touch and in the dark!
- Fully-charged cell phone battery, a charger and an extra battery that is charged to stay in touch. An updated contact list with current phone numbers is also a good idea. Seniors need to communicate with family and friends!
- Keep copies of all important personal documents, like medical records, insurance policies, birth certificates, mortgage and home deeds, pet vax records, etc, in a waterproof container, or in a zip bag in a securely closed dishwasher. Seniors may need any one of these vital docs after a severe storm!
- Stock extra pet supplies, like food, treats, training pads, etc, just in case. Seniors love their pets like family!
- Additional items that are recommended for seniors to keep on hand include, a change or two of clothes; extra cash if a disruption in power renders ATM’s useless; extra blankets; a manual can opener; an extra set of keys; a multi-purpose, pocket-sized tool; a whistle to alert neighbors or emergency personnel; and a map of the local area in case roads are blocked due to flooding, downed power lines or trees.
- Keep flashlights, extra batteries and flashlight bulbs; maps, flares, jumper cables, bottled water, non-perishable food items and snacks; sunscreen and items that provide shade (umbrellas, wide-brimmed hats, scarves, etc, in case you end up in the intense Florida sun; and a first aid kit with necessary medical supplies in your car in the event you have to evacuate. Seniors need to supply their vehicles!
- Take advantage of my Home Helpers® Clearwater FREE Consultation for seniors that could benefit from in-home care, have special needs, or require non-medical care services in the Clearwater area that our compassionate caregivers consistently provide. Sometimes seniors need extra help!
The Florida Department of Elder Affairs website states: “Governor (Ron) DeSantis and Lieutenant Governor (Jeanette) Nuñez envision a Florida where older adults and indeed all Floridians are thriving and not just living but living well and aging well.”
Their mission statement supports, “(Promoting) the well-being, safety, and independence of Florida's seniors, their families, and caregivers, with a vision for all Floridians to live well and age well.” Home Helpers® Clearwater is totally on board and strongly encourages seniors to follow these eleven helpful hurricane hints!
We, at Home Helpers® Clearwater, are honored to have received the Home Care Pulse – Best of Home Care® Provider of Choice Award for the fifth consecutive year: 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020 & 2021. We proudly serve male and female seniors in Clearwater, Dunedin, Palm Harbor, Safety Harbor, Tarpon Springs, Holiday, New Port Richey, Trinity, Port Richey, Hudson and surrounding areas. Home Helpers®…we are Making Life Easier℠ 727.942.2539
Florida Department of Elder Affairs