Preparing Older Loved Ones for a Hurricane

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Hurricane Preparations for Our Older Family Members and Friends

It is important to remember the safety of our older family members and friends before hurricane season. Whether you live near or far away, ensuring they have the proper resources can prove vital. We recommend starting in plenty of time because helping them could take longer than expected.

It may be daunting preparing for a hurricane, but in this guide we offer tips on how to best prepare your older family members and friends. We cover topics such as creating a plan, stocking up on supplies and staying informed. By following this guide, you can help your older loved ones feel safer and more secure during the storm.

Hurricane Approaches Florida Shores photo

Florida hurricane season starts Jun 1st and ends Nov 30th of every year.

Preparing for a hurricane should take place well before the storm approaches. Here are 7 important tips to follow:


1

Create a List of Resources

Make sure your older family member or friend has a written (not electronic) list of phone numbers. Review the list with them so they know who to call for “what” and “when”:

  • All family
  • Local friends
  • Direct neighbors
  • Primary care physician
  • Pharmacist
  • Local disaster relief
2

Collect and Protect Documents

The items below should be in one place and in a sealed plastic bag. To be extra secure, take photos of each document with a mobile phone. Then, save them to a USB drive and place in a safety deposit box.

  • Birth certificate
  • Personal ID
  • Social Security card
  • Deed
  • Insurance policy

IMPORTANT: Do not print any of the above items using an inkjet printer unless it is laminated afterwards. This is because the list may get wet and the ink will run and thus become illegible.

3

Know the Status of Hurricanes

Have your older loved one stay informed by watching weather updates for their specific area. We recommend the following weather resources when tracking hurricanes:

Having a hurricane tracking app on their phone is useful for when the power goes out or they do not have access to a television or radio.

Hurricane News Tracking photo
4

Medication Quantity Check

When preparing older loved ones for a hurricane, make sure that all medicines are in excess. Having an extra supply of medications will help prevent them from running out. If not doing so already, portion out the medication by day to make it easier and less stressful for them when their mind is on other things.

5

Secure Pets and Animals

Keep their pet in a carrier designed for that kind of animal or on the correct strength leash. You never know when they may be forced to evacuate. The last thing you want is for them to be tracking down a petrified animal during the chaos. So, encourage them to secure their pet before the storm hits.

6

Create a Hurricane Check-in Protocol

There’s nothing more stressful than not being able to reach your older loved one. If you don’t live near them, ask if their neighbor will check in on them at least once a day. Don’t forget to inform them to expect a visit from their neighbor daily.

7

Assisted Living Facility or Nursing Home

If your older loved one is in special housing, call the front office and ask about the following:

  • If proper backup generators are present on the property.
  • If staff levels will be safely maintained during the storm.
  • For a copy of their emergency evacuation or relocation plan.
  • “If” and “when” an evacuation or relocation may take place.
Elderly Women with Daughter photo

Hurricane Prepared Checklist

Use this checklist for hurricane preparedness to check-off items they have. This will help them keep track of the items they still need.

Hurricane Preparation With Elderly photo
Hurricane Checklist

REMINDERS: Don’t forget these things when you first learn of a hurricane approaching:

  1. Stock up on popular items to avoid stores selling out. This will help relieve anxiety once the storm arrives. Bottled water and batteries sellout the quickest.
  2. Make an effort to stay up to date on weather forecasts and news alerts. This is to best prepare for the storm and allows for quick action if necessary.

For more information on hurricane preparations see: Preparing for Hurricane & Preparedness Checklist Florida 2024


Closing

The importance of preparing older loved ones for a hurricane cannot be overstated. While easier said than done, taking the necessary steps now to ensure their safety is worth it for the both of you. Not only will it go a long way for their safety, it will also help reduce stress. It’s our responsibility to protect and look after our older family members and friends. With the right preparation, they can feel more confident during hurricane season.


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