Hurricanes are posing an active threat to New Yorkers and while there’s no way to avoid them, there are some things people can do to protect – and sometimes save – themselves, their loved ones, neighbors, and even beloved pets.
For years, The Salvation Army Great New York emergency workers have been on the ground to help before, during, and long after storms. Now, they’ve launched an educational campaign – on TikTok – to get people’s attention. Their Deputy Director for Operations/Emergency Services, Ioana Opris, who was on the ground during Hurricane Rita, is behind the campaign. Here are just a few of her tips:
Pack a Bag: Pack a bag in advance in case you have to leave in a hurry. When the forecast looks ominous, be ready with several days’ worth of essentials, including bottled water, medications, toilet paper, feminine hygiene products, flashlight, and batteries. This is especially important in basement apartments where water can fill in a matter of minutes.
Think Like Your Pet: Too often pets are a last-minute, panicked thought when escaping a building. So, do what you do for yourself – pack a pet bag to go. Include their favorite toy/s, snacks, food, a collapsible bowl, leash, and medications so they can safely weather the storm with you.
Stay Connected with Yourself, and Others: Plan where your family should go if separated and how to get in touch with each other. Keep important documents – medical records, passport, ID, insurance, etc. in a safe, water-proof bag that you can grab in a minute. Figure out how to keep track of vulnerable neighbors, especially when the power fails.
The most important thing you as an individual can do at this time of year (hurricane season): get prepared.
Banner Image: Hurricane satellite photo. Image Credit – NASA