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Preparing For Hurricane Season Check List

Reportedly, the 2011 hurricane season is predicted to bring around 15 tropical storms. Officials around the Texas gulfcoast believe the best way for residents to minimize the probability of damage to their property or themselves is to be prepared.

Accordingly, the following is a basic check list for gulf coast residents to consider as they prepare for the 2011 hurricane season:

Review Insurance Coverage

Gulf coast residents are encouraged to read their home owner's insurance policy. People who rent property should remember their land lord's insurance policy probably only covers the building. Renters should highly consider purchasing their own renters' policy as they are inexpensive and provide essential coverage in case of damage to personal property. Further, gulf coast residents should remember flooding is usually only covered when the house is under a specific flood insurance policy. Most standard home owner's insurance policies do not cover damage caused by rising flood waters. After Hurricane Ike, many insurance carriers denied claims based on the allegation that "storm surges" flooded coastal properties and the damages were not entirely caused by "windstorm."

Inventory Assets and Compile Important Documents

Gulf coast residents should also take an inventory of the items in their homes because in order to replace the contents of the home they must know everything in it. A good way to take a home inventory is to make a home video of the homes' contents both outside and inside and store the video somewhere off-site like a safety deposit box. Gulf coast residents are also encouraged to keep receipts of expensive items and important documents at a single off-site location.

Understand Evacuation Routes and Procedures

Gulf coast residents should familiarize themselves with evacuation routes put into place by local authorities. They should determine a family evacuation plan with safe contact locations. Residents should fuel and service the family cars and consider investing in a fuel transfer tank.

Protect the Property

In the event of a storm, gulf coast residents should take actions to minimize damage to their property. This includes covering windows with storm shutters or plywood and moving vehicles to a covered location away from trees. Gulf coast residents are also encouraged to remove potential projectiles outside the home into the garage. These include items such as patio furniture, grills and potted plants. Any items which cannot be brought indoors should be tied down.

Stock Emergency Supplies

Residents are also encouraged to stock emergency supplies in water proof containers. A hurricane supply kit should include; a three day supply of water, non-perishable foods, a change of clothes and shoes, prescription medicine, blankets or sleeping bags, first aid kit, emergency tools, extra set of car keys, batteries and radio, emergency radio, extra cash & credit cards, flash lights and spot lights and special items for young children and elderly.

Prepare Hurricane Refrigerator

Gulf coast residents are also encouraged to take measures to preserve frozen and refrigerated food items as power outages often accompany hurricanes. Freezing food items gives them the potential stay cooler longer in case they are needed after the storm. Residents are encouraged to place all cold food items in closed plastic containers or at least scoop everything into plastic garbage bags to prevents any unpleasant smells before leaving town.