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Congressman Gus Bilirakis

Representing the 12th District of Florida

Are you Prepared?

September 12, 2008
Bilirakis Blog

Given all of the recent hurricane activity in Gulf of Mexico, do you and your loved ones have a plan in the event of an emergency? 

Tampa Bay's 10 posted an article which details how some residents of Pinellas county are feeling the effects of Hurricane Ike.

"In the Shore Acres neighborhood of St. Petersburg, many of the low-lying streets flooded Thursday morning. Ike and a high tide pushed water into Tampa Bay, up into storm sewers and out into roadways.


Experts say if a major hurricane hit Pinellas a storm surge could essentially cut the county in half. County communications staff members use a giant storm-surge banner to illustrate that point. To view the length of it, you have to launch it off the top of a two-story building."

If you are staying home during a hurricane here’s a list of items to consider for your survival kit. Keep items in airtight plastic bags or containers. Replace stored water every six months and double check battery expiration dates.

Suggested items for a “Stay Kit”
• One-week supply of food that requires no cooking and fluids to drink
• Ready-to-eat canned meats, fruits and vegetables
• Nuts, beef jerky and trail mix
• Raisins, peanut butter and granola bars
• Formula or baby food
• Canned juices or sports drinks
• One gallon of water per person per day
• Non-electric can opener
• Utility knife
• Cups, plates and plastic utensils
• Cooler and ice
• Pet food

First Aid Supplies
• Adhesive bandages, gauze pads and tape
• Soap and anti-bacterial hand gel
• Antiseptic
• Latex gloves, scissors and tweezers
• Thermometer
• Sunscreen
• Over-the-counter pain reliever
• Anti-diarrhea medicine and laxative
• Anti-itch cream

Tools and Emergency Supplies
• Flashlight and lanterns
• Battery-operated radio
• Extra batteries
• Matches or lighter in a waterproof container
• Compass and local maps with shelter locations
• A shut-off wrench and other tools
• Paper and pencil
• Plastic sheeting and tarps
• Elastic cords or rope
• Tarps and plastic sheeting

• Portable toilet (5-gallon bucket, heavy trash bags, chlorine bleach)
• Toilet paper and moist towelettes
• Feminine supplies
• Personal hygiene items
Clothing and bedding
• One complete change of clothing and shoes per person
• Sturdy shoes or work boots
• Rain gear
• Blankets and sleeping bags
• Sunglasses

Kids and Entertainment
• Favorite nonperishable snacks
• Powdered milk
• Stuffed animal or favorite toy
• Blanket and pacifier
• Diapers and wipes
• Card and board games
• Books for all ages.

Please visit Gus' Hurricane Prepardeness page and specifically review the Hurricane Preparedness Checklist (PDF).

You can also find links to both Federal and local websites that provide useful information to help protect your home, family and pets before, during, and after a storm.