July 14, 2020

Hurricane Season Is Here: Be Prepared During the Pandemic

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is offering tips on how to stay safe during the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic. CPSC Acting Chairman Robert Adler said in a statement, “Powerful storms and hurricanes are likely to affect millions of Americans who are already dealing with the stress that comes with a pandemic. That is why we urge everyone now more than ever, to be informed, be prepared and be safe.”

Hurricane Season Is Here: Be Prepared During the Pandemic

The hurricane season begins June 1 and runs through November. There are things you can do before the storm. Keep freezers full, since that helps the appliance keep food at a safe temperature longer. Keep water on hand too; each person in your household should have one gallon of clean water per day.

If you must evacuate to a shelter, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that you keep cleaning items on hand to help protect yourself against the virus. Bring along cloth face coverings, hand sanitizer, and cleaning products.

If you are sheltering in place and the power goes out, and if you have a portable generator, never operate it inside your home, garage, basement, crawlspace, shed, or on the porch. The generator should be set up at least 20 feet away from the house. And the exhaust should be directed away from the home and other buildings.

If the power goes out and you need to cook food, you can use your charcoal grill. But don’t use that indoors or in a garage, even with the door open. Lethal levels of CO2 can build up in a short period of time.

If appliances have gotten wet during the storm or during a flood, don’t touch them. Discard any unplugged electrical or gas appliances because they can pose a shock and fire hazard. Have a professional evaluate the appliances in your home before you use them.

You’ll also need to go through the food in your refrigerator, freezer, and pantry after the storm, especially if your home has been exposed to flood water or the power was out. for an extended period of time. Learn what to do with the food in What to Save and Throw After a Power Outage.

 

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