By David Peel
Many Mid-southerners vacation near the gulf, many have relatives there and some even have beach homes. Hurricanes bring high winds, sometimes changing directions depending on your location, and flooding.
With so many hurricanes, here are some tips to be ready if you do not or cannot evacuate:
Plywood over windows;
A well-stocked first aid kit;
plenty of batteries and flashlights;
A charged fire extinguisher;
Bottled water; and a 5 gallon bucket;
A manual can opener;
Storm radio with batteries;
Fully charged cell phone mobile charger;
Generator and lots of gas;
Propane stove and propane;
Secure outside objects;
Have several days’ supply of food and water for your family or others.
Use windowless room in winds.
Post storm Tips from recent SALLY SURVIVORS:
- File with FEMA and get your FEMA number ASAP! You will need it for everything. Download the FEMA app now. They now prefer that you register online rather than the phone. (You can select DAMAGE UNKNOWN if you can’t get to your home to see it or not sure).
- File a claim with BOTH your homeowner’s and flood insurance. Even though it’s a flood, homeowners will cover some wind damage and most of them will give you money for “loss of use” if you can’t live in your house.
- File for DSNAP-Disaster food stamps. ANYONE in the affected areas can get them, they are not just for poor people. Do not be proud, you can use the money you save on food to replace clothes and other necessities.
- File for Disaster Unemployment. Again, DO NOT BE PROUD! If you can’t live in your house or go to work because your work is closed or flooded, this applies to you.
- Get rental assistance. FEMA and SBA provide rental assistance to help pay for a place to live until you can get back into your house or find a new one.
- If you want to buy a house, apply for an SBA loan. The interest rates will be VERY CHEAP. Although it is called the SBA, it is for homeowners too.
- The Salvation Army and American Red Cross will sometimes give away money as well. Just call them and apply.
- Check local businesses for specials and discounts for people in the affected flood areas. Businesses will offer everything from half price pizza to furniture and clothing specials.
- Call all of your bill collectors and notify them that you are in the affected area and/or that your house flooded. Most will delay your bill due dates for a month or two. This includes your mortgage company, cable, electricity, water, credit card companies, phone etc.
- Most importantly, help others but allow people to help you!
Peel seeks justice for those injured in tractor trailer and car accidents, medical malpractice, and disability. He often addresses churches, clubs and groups without charge. Peel may be reached through PeelLawFirm.com wherein other articles may be accessed.