As another storm season gets underway, it is important that you take the time to prepare. Much of the damage of 2014’s Hurricane Fay was a result of complacency and lack of preparation for what was expected to be a tropical storm. Don’t make that mistake this hurricane season. Preparation is vital when dealing with the unexpected.
Before the storm
Create a family plan if you don’t already have one. Make sure to review and practice it and take special care to include pets.
Stock up on safety and emergency gear including flashlights and extra batteries, as well as items like nails and plywood. Stock up on these at the beginning of the season if possible.
Once a hurricane warning has been issued
Prepare your home property. Get shutters or plywood in place on windows. Move garbage cans and outdoor furniture into the house or tie down anything that can’t fit inside.
Check on your neighbours. The elderly, infirmed or parents with young children may have trouble preparing and require help.
Charge all electronics in advance of potential power outages
After the hurricane
Do not leave your home unless officials say it’s safe to do so. Keep the road clear if possible for emergency vehicles.
Be cautious and wear protective clothing while surveying your property. Should the need arise; know that BF&M is here to help you. Following Fay and Gonzalo, BF&M opened the next day to help customers report claims and assess damage. A temporary St. George’s office was established to help East-enders report damage regardless of the condition of the Causeway or phone lines. Adjustors worked around the clock and on weekends to take reports on over 1800 customer locations. Within 24 hours of reporting their damage, 85% of BF&M customers received visits from a BF&M claims adjustor.
There are many resources at your fingertips to help you prepare for the 2016 hurricane season. The Emergency Measure Organization (EMO) is the Government body that coordinates Bermuda’s disaster preparation and response. Their website and radio station, 100.1 FM are the official source of information during an emergency. Download their emergency plan from their website and familiarize yourself with emergency numbers, tips for health and safety, as well as securing your home.
The Bermuda Weather Service (BWS) is another source of important weather-related information. The BWS is officially recognized as the islands National Meteorological and Hydrological Service, providing public, marine, tropical and aviation weather forecasts, warning and climatological services. The BF&M-sponsored weather.bm informs the public when the BWS issue a storm watch and/or warning.
The easiest way to know if you’re covered during a storm is to make sure your BF&M policies are up to date. If you’ve purchased new outdoor furniture or completed renovations on your home, update your policy or call us and we can arrange a survey of your property.
Preparation is vital when dealing with the unexpected. You can count on BF&M to put you first when you need us most. Call 295-5566 or visit us on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter to find storm preparation tips throughout the upcoming season.