Hurricane Readiness for Families, Consumers, and Pets

Hurricane Season runs from June 1st thru November 30th in Florida.  Are you prepared? Have you thought about your important documents, nonfood emergency supplies, medications, pantry needs, food and water supplies and survival of your pets during a disaster?

Here are some ideas to consider:


Protect your important documents

In case of an emergency keep your important papers and other documents secure in a waterproof, fireproof lock box. It is also important to keep copies and/or digital backups that can be easily accessed after a disaster. Important documents may include wills, advanced directives, power of attorney documents, birth certificates, deeds, liens, passports, credit cards, household inventories, death certificates, insurance policies, driver’s licenses, vehicle titles, social security cards, financial records, diplomas, and/or human and/or pet vaccination records.

Other important items to secure

  • Important phone numbers and passwords
  • Lock box and safety deposit box keys
  • Spare keys to vehicles. Know where these are located so you don’t have to stress and scramble to find them.
  • Keys to family member homes and other items, you are entrusted with
  • Small, cherished photos and heirlooms; limited to the most important and easy to carry
  • Easy to transport, to-go bags on wheels. One for each person is recommended.

Important nonfood emergency items to consider having on hand

  • Battery-powered radio and/or TV
  • 2-week supply of medications
  • Contact solution, distilled water, and/or other necessary medical/hygiene type items
  • First aid kit
  • Extra clothing, including sturdy, closed-toe type of shoes
  • Sunscreen and insect repellant
  • Blankets, pillows, and pillowcases
  • Toilet paper, tissues, and paper towels
  • Face coverings, sanitizing wipes and hand sanitizer
  • Extra phone chargers; battery backup devices
  • Extra batteries and a flashlight
  • Matches in a waterproof container
  • Trash bags
  • Cooler on wheels
  • Extra cash, if needed.

In home pantry prep: Stock up for Emergencies

  1. Review and write up a list of what you already have. Don’t forget those medical and personal hygiene supplies.
  2. Plan a menu for approximately 2 weeks to include nutritious foods you and/or your family enjoy. Follow MyPlate recommendations.
  3. Purchase enough food and supplies for about two weeks. Don’t forget, if everyone is home (college aged children and older extended family members), you might need more supplies than usual.
  4. Don’t overstuff your refrigerator or freezer: It may block the airflow, and the appliance may not work as efficiently. If you lose power, you may lose and not be able to recover all supplies.
  5. Remember to stock up on what you need, but don’t overbuy. Prevent food waste. Prevent Food Waste – UF/IFAS Extension Broward County (


Have enough water on supply for everyone that will be hunkering down together during an emergency.  Make sure the water is safe to drink. Consume safe drinking water to stay properly hydrated.

Food and menu planning

This is very important so you don’t fall victim to just eating junk food that may not be that healthy, during a disaster.  Think about all of the nonperishable items from the five MyPlate food groups: fruit, vegetable protein, grain and dairy groups. Think about nutrition when creating your disaster menus.


Food Safety

Don’t forget the basic food safety principles of clean, cook, separate, and chill. These are important before, during and after a disaster. They help keep your food safe to eat and prevent foodborne illness.  Keep you and your family safe and free from sickness.

Disaster preparation for your pets

When planning for an emergency, don’t forget your pets. Make sure they have items such as food, water, bowls, bedding, toys, treats, medications, a collar with an ID tag, pet sized trash bags for sanitation, and their vaccination records. Bring along a photo of your pet with you too, for future identification, if needed. Check with your local county shelter to see if they will allow pets and where they will be housed.



I hope these reminders, will help you prepare for and successfully endure any emergencies you may be faced with. Stay informed and prepared. Stay in communication with the authorities. Stay safe. Stay healthy.

To learn more, read more. (One of my favorite phrases!)

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Posted: May 12, 2022

Category: Disaster Preparation, Food Safety, Health & Nutrition, UF/IFAS Extension,
Tags: Batteries, Battery Operated Tv And Radio, Broward County, Cook, Disaster Meals, Disaster Menus, Disaster Preparedness, Disaster Preparedness And Your Pets, Eating For Good Health, Food And Water Supplies, Food Safety, Foodborne Illness, Hurricane Food Safety, Hurricane Preparedness, Hurricane Preparedness; Helpful Resources; Food Safety; Non-perishables; Menu Planning During A Disaster, Hurricane Season Runs From June 1st Thru November 30th, Important Phone Numbers During A Disaster, Items To Secure, Non-perishables, Nutrition, Pantry Preparation, Pet Needs, Secure Important Documents

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