The strongest Category 5 storm ever recorded—Hurricane Irma—is expected to make landfall in Florida by the weekend and early next week. Florida Gov. Rick Scott has already declared a state of emergency in all 57 counties in Florida, sending many families in panic mode as they gather the essentials like food and water to prepare for the worse.
But it’s not just extra food costs that most households have to worry about, getting prepared for a major hurricane could cost a family thousands of dollars.
“This can run the average family about $5,000 or more for most evacuations. Go on Amazon and start adding the items and look at the cost of gasoline, which is rising due to Hurricane Harvey. Add on top of that additional expenses for hotel stays, portable stoves, plywood, and hardware, and you are looking at substantial losses,” Daniel Odess, President of GlobalPro Recovery, a Coral Gables-based company that helps businesses and homeowners with insurance risk.
The National Hurricane Center said families in danger zones need to have a “basic disaster supplies kit” available in case of a disaster that should include water, food (at least a three-day supply), battery-powered or hand crank radio, a flashlight, a whistle, tools, maps, and a first aid kit.
A National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) spokesperson told FOX Business that the 2017 Atlantic hurricane season “will be one of the most destructive seasons” without a doubt, so families shouldn’t cut any corners when preparing.
Odess adds that while safety and the basic essentials should be everyone’s first priority—families should also start preparing for possible insurance claims down the road.
Here are five things every family needs to do before a major hurricane, according to Odess. Click here to read more.