It’s that time of year when it’s important to be prepared for hurricanes and tropical storms! Our area can experience flooding and power outages during and after major storms. We’re sharing a hurricane preparedness checklist to help you and your family stay safe! The first items on the list are things to have on hand – especially if the Eastern Shore is in the path of a major hurricane. The second part of list tells you what to do before, during, and after the storm. Stay safe, everyone!

Items to Stock

Must Haves

  • Battery powered TV
  • Battery powered Radio
  • Flashlights
  • Battery lantern
  • Extra batteries
  • Lighters/Matches

First aid kit

  • Extra prescription medicine
  • Nonprescription medicines like pain relievers, cough cold and flu, decongestant, etc.
  • Band-Aids
  • Gauze
  • Anti-biotic cream
  • Iodine
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Moist towelettes

Water minimums

  • 7 gallons per person
  • 2 gallons additional water for cooking and sanitation per person
  • Portable water filter
  • Ice chest and bags of ice for storage of food and medicine


  • 2 weeks’ worth of non-perishable foods requiring little or no preparation, cooking or water, baby food and formula
  • Snacks that do not increase thirst
  • Hard candies for diabetics needing glucose balance
  • 2 weeks of pet food

Creature comforts

  • Extra cash and credit cards
  • Bug repellant
  • Sunscreen
  • Solarcaine
  • Teddy bear
  • Candy and gum
  • Juices and sports drink
  • Cards, books, games
  • 7 days of clean clothes

Important Papers

(Store these items in waterproof container and have them ready for evacuation if necessary.)

  • Copies of Driver’s license
  • Passports
  • Social security cards
  • Immunization records
  • Utility bill
  • Emergency phone #
  • Family records (birth, death, baptism, marriage certificates)
  • Copies of will, deeds, insurance policies, contracts, stocks, and bonds, next of kin notification phone #’s
  • Inventory and pictures of valuable household items
  • Any desired family photos
  • Map and directions to emergency shelters

Supplies and tools

  • Diapers
  • Sleeping bags and pillows
  • Grill, charcoal or gas for grille
  • Disposable utensils and plates/bowls for eating
  • Can opener
  • Toothbrush, toothpaste
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Toiletries
  • Cleaning supplies
  • Trash bags
  • Crowbar
  • Hammer
  • Sledgehammer
  • Chain saw
  • Hand saw
  • Nails
  • Workman gloves
  • Rope
  • Fire extinguisher


Make a family plan

  • Complete a plan of action with the entire family. Make sure everyone knows evacuation procedures and preparations for inside and outside the home.
  • Get a current map and plan various evacuation routes, make sure all drivers know how to read the map.
  • Have a safe place to take your pets, evacuation center can’t take pets.
  • Make sure your pet is wearing updated ID.
  • Keep your evacuation vehicle gas tank full

Prepare your yard

  • Store loose outdoor items and furniture
  • Remove debris from yard
  • Trim dead branches from trees and shrubs
  • Protect pool filter motor
  • Secure small sheds
  • Park cars in safe place

When a hurricane watch is issued

  • Make sure your hurricane kit is complete
  • Stay tuned to WBOC for up to the minute reports
  • Board up windows
  • Remove furniture from window areas and cover with plastic sheets
  • Turn refrigerator and freezer to coldest settings and keep closed
  • Disconnect propane gas line
  • Brace garage doors from inside
  • Make hotel reservations for evacuation. Pet friendly if needed

When evacuation order is issued (leave early and in daylight if possible)

  • Sterilize bath tubs and sinks and then fill with water
  • Put chlorine in pool and leave full
  • Notify trusted neighbors of your evacuation plan
  • Notify family members outside of evacuation area of your evacuation plan
  • Bring your driver’s license and utility bill
  • Bring your pets collar and ID
  • Pet carrier or cage for travel
  • Call local emergency management for shelters that can accommodate you if you have special needs.


  • Stay in your home if you have not been ordered to leave
  • Secure and brace from the inside exterior doors
  • Close all interior doors
  • Take shelter in a small interior room
  • Stay away from glass windows and items that could become projectiles in strong winds
  • If you don’t have an interior room take shelter under a table
  • Cover your head with pillows or anything to prevent injury from flying debris
  • If you lose electricity, use battery operated lanterns or flashlights for lighting. Do NOT use candles or gas lanterns.
  • Use a battery-operated TV tuned to WBOC for storm emergency information.
  • If you don’t have a battery-operated TV tune your battery-operated radio to Cat Country 99.5 or 107.9 for storm emergency information.


  • Stay tuned to WBOC for weather reports, road conditions and alerts from authorities.
  • Remember, Chopper 16 may be your only reliable source for road information.
  • Do not attempt to drive across flowing water.
  • Do not enter water or allow children to play in water as there may be downed power lines that may be or may become energized without warning.
  • If you have evacuated, return home only after the all clear.
  • Use flashlights or battery-powered lanterns for lighting until your electricity is restored and declared safe to use.
  • Use bottled water for cooking, drinking and sanitation until authorities declare the water supply safe.
  • Take pictures to document the damage to your home and property.
  • Don’t wait for the government to clear your street. Obtain the assistance of able-bodied neighbors and clear the street for traffic and emergency vehicles.
  • Watch out for snakes, spiders, insects and other animals that may be seeking dry shelter.
  • Take reasonable steps to protect your property from further damage as likely your insurance policy requires.
  • Use EXTREME caution using chainsaws and other power tools to clean up debris and make repairs.
  • Keep generators outside for ventilation.