In 2016, Hurricane Matthew tore through South Carolina, and left damage behind as it moved. This Category 5 hurricane took the lives of 603 people, and caused more than 15 billion dollars in damage.
The southeast is hit with hurricanes of varying categories, severe storms, and even tornadoes every year. If you're new to the area, it can take you a season or two to get used to the area's natural disasters.
This all may seem overwhelming, but getting used to readying yourself for the worst is something you will get used to after not too long.
It's best to prepare one disaster at a time. We'll begin with the largest threat to the southeast: Hurricanes.
The southeast is one of the most hit spots when it comes to hurricanes. Hurricanes are dangerous storms that become more and more powerful as they move over the ocean. Once they leave the ocean and hit land, they have so much power that they can destroy towns in as little as a few hours.
It's crucial to prepare for hurricane season before it arrives. This means putting away and tying down any outdoor furniture, protecting your windows with wood, and building an emergency kit. Emergency kits are important to have during hurricane season especially.
When hurricanes hit, many people in town will either evacuate or shelter in place. That means stores will be shut down, roads will be closed, and emergency services will have a hard time getting around. Pack your emergency kit with at least the following.
Earthquakes have quite literally rocked the nation for years. When plates shift underground, it creates shockwaves that rock the surface. Earthquakes are one of the most common natural disasters all throughout the United States, and you never know when one may hit.
The best way to prepare for something you can't see coming is to have the proper insurance on your home. It's also important to remember how to seek shelter and be safe when the earthquake is happening. Make sure you know how to get out of your house as soon as possible, and have an emergency kit somewhere accessible.
Having an emergency kit will insure your family doesn't have to struggle in the aftermath of an earthquake. The only emergency item you should always keep on you is a whistle. Pack your kit with enough supplies for everyone.
Tornadoes play a big part in the nightmares of millions of people, and are unfortunately just as terrifying in reality. Tornadoes form when cold, dry air meets warm, humid air. The two don't combine -- they instead move around each other, creating a swirling vortex known as a tornado.
You'll likely receive a warning that will let you know when a tornado is on its way, but it's better to prepare for tornadoes before they become a looming threat. Prepare by readying a shelter that you and your family can retreat to for safety.
Create a safe shelter underground by making room in a basement or cellar for you, your family, and your pets. Keep an emergency kit in your shelter as well, and be sure to stock up on supplies for everybody.
Landslides most commonly occur during and after heavy rainfall. During hurricanes and earthquakes, landslides become large threats. A landslide is when large amounts of rocks, dirt, and debris fall and move very quickly, which can move to crush and cover homes, properties, and people.
Since landslides are fast, you will have to be faster. When a landslide is heading for your home, there won't be a lot of time to gather everything you need and get out of your home in time. Creating an emergency kit and keeping it by an exit will save you precious time.
You should fill up your emergency kit with the following, at the very least.
Storms affect every part of the country, and can range in seriousness. We're not talking about your run of the mill rainstorm here -- we're talking whipping winds and harsh rain. Severe storms can bring with them thunder, lightning, and flooding.
It's important to prepare yourself for thunder and lightning storms before they become a real threat in your area. Learn how to keep yourself and your family safe from lightning, and make sure you have an emergency kit full of the following supplies just in case the power goes out.
Now you know about the most prominent threats that loom over the southeast, and how to prepare for them. It may take a little time to assemble your wits and your kits, but it will be completely worth it when an emergency happens.
You never know when disaster could strike, so it's best that you get started on assembling at least one kit as soon as possible. You can find all the supplies you need right here on our site, and have a kit ready fast. Remember that it's never too late to get started.
Emergency Plan (ready.gov)
Emergency Contact Info (ready.gov)
Emergency Plan for Schools (ready.gov)
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