Hurricane Sandy has come and gone, and many of us at Saint Augustine’s University are concerned for the victims but glad that the impact on North Carolina was not worse. But what if it had been worse — do you know how to prepare for a hurricane, or any other natural disaster for that matter?
The first thing that is truly important to your safety is to know what natural disasters are more frequent in North Carolina. Tornados and hurricanes are much more common than a blizzard or a tsunami, and the preparation for those are slightly different.
Have the essentials: A flashlight, batteries, possibly candles, a first aid kit, a blanket for warmth, nonperishable food, and water. Stack up on these when you go school shopping.
Charge your phone, your extra battery if you have one, your computer, and any other device you may have that can get you in contact with 911 if need be. SAU has their own emergency number (4911), use it if you have to! Follow them on the various social networks and make sure your working phone number is on file so if there are any procedures you need to do, they can let you know hastily.
Know what our evacuation procedures are and follow them if and when instructed. Educate others around you as well. Share your knowledge, it could save lives!
Lastly, anything that can be unplugged needs to be unplugged. Yes, grandma was right! Electrical storms are a natural disaster and are not uncommon for North Carolina either, and having everything plugged in can harm you.
Of course, some things will differ depending on the exact natural disaster, but these basics can truly get you far!
— Aisha Taylor