If a hurricane is coming and you decide to evacuate to a safer area.
1. Hurricanes often travel at a slow pace so you have opportunity to plan your get away. You need to figure out how and when you will leave. Do you have a car? If not, then don't be afraid to ask others. If you do have a car, then plan to leave during off-peak hours to avoid as much congestion on the roads. It may be wise to plan to leave at 1:00 AM or 4:00 AM.
2. Get a good road map, yes the old fashion paper kind. Your GPS could malfunction during the storm so a good road map will allow you to trace out your evacuation route based on the information the authorities give you as to the best routes to travel. Also plan pit stops and rest areas so you can get refreshed if you become too exhausted.
3. Load up the vehicle. Pack food and water. (which should be in your emergency kit anyways.) Also bring important papers such as birth certificates, medicine prescriptions, passports and other important documents. Also pack important pictures of family so as to avoid having them damaged forever. Anticipate that you will be away from your home for about a week so pack accordingly with toothpaste, deodorant and laundry soap as well. Also have an extra quart of oil for the car and you may also want to pack an extra gas can to reduce the frequency of stops and gas stations on evacuation routes can run out of gas. Contact friends or family that you may need to stay with - give them advanced noticed that you are coming.
4. Protect your home and yard by storing loose items, garden furniture and tools so they do not cause additional damage. You will want to board up windows and secure anything that may become loose in high winds.
5. Bring sufficient cash for two weeks. Regardless of how well you have planned your escape, issues arise and you may need cash to bail yourself out of a situation. ATM's may not be running after a major hurricane so be financially prepared. If you expect to be displaced, a family of four needs approximately $500 to last a week if you'll be staying in hotels. You'll need less than that if you will be staying with friends, relatives or in a shelter.
6. Make sure your cell phones are charged up and that you have a car charger for your phones as well. It is important to keep all lines of communication open.
7. Stay calm. It can be a little unnerving and if you have children, it will not serve them well to see you flustered and anxious. This will also raise their levels of anxiety.
8. Always check for last minute details. Have you shut the water main off? Has the power and gas been turned off as well before you leave? Did you bring your pets? Are you well rested to drive? Sometimes an extra couple of hours of rest makes a lot of difference. You need to be alert when driving.