The Ultimate Florida Hurricane Preparedness Checklist

Jun 23, 2023 | Community News

Whether you live in Florida or will in the future, hurricane preparedness is something that should be on your radar. There’s no better time to plan and prepare for a hurricane than before the season strikes – and we’re here to help. Check out our checklist for Florida Hurricane Preparedness below.

Hurricane Planning Checklist

1. Get acquainted with terminology and zones

As storm season comes around, you’ll see a range of terms pertaining to hurricanes and storms. Knowing them, as well as their qualities, can make all the difference in preparation and safety.

These are the common terms you should know, as defined by the National Hurricane Center and the Central Pacific Hurricane Center.

Tropical Depression

A tropical cyclone with maximum sustained winds of 38 mph or less

Tropical Storm

A tropical cyclone with maximum sustained winds of 39 to 73 mph


A tropical cyclone with maximum sustained winds of 74 mph or higher

Major Hurricane

A tropical cyclone with maximum sustained winds of 111 mph or higher, corresponding to a Category 3, 4 or 5 on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale

As storms begin to develop for the season, you’ll need to know your evacuation zone, which you can locate on the Florida Division of Emergency Management’s map. This is designed to protect those who live in low-lying, flood-prone areas from storm surges and flooding.
Be aware of your zone and whether evacuation is ordered for your area; if it’s not, be aware of if your home is safe enough from hurricane-force wind speeds and potential flooding to shelter there.

florida hurricane preparedness pack

2. Prepare an emergency kit

Having an emergency kit prepared ahead of time can help you to feel more calm and collected should a watch or warning be issued. These are some of the items you should have onhand.

  • A weeks’ worth of nonperishable food
  • One gallon of water per person per day
  • Two-weeks’ supply of medication
  • Flashlights
  • Weather Radio
  • Extra batteries
  • Cash
  • Cell phone chargers
  • First aid manual and first aid items
  • Important documents, phone numbers and contact information kept in a waterproof container
  • Extra clothing and rain gear
  • Necessities for pets
  • Nonelectric can opener and disposable tableware

3. Come up with an emergency plan

If you’ve got your emergency kit set, it’s time to formulate a plan for each scenario you could face when dealing with a hurricane.

Evacuation Planning

If you plan to evacuate when storms occur, call to arrange a place to stay prior to leaving, pack your disaster supply kit, fill the car with gas, and leave as soon as possible.

Plans for Sheltering in Place

If you plan on sheltering where you are, make sure you have all the supplies needed to protect your home. Ensure that your home’s exterior is strong, and check with your homeowners insurance if floods are covered. If floods are not covered, consider purchasing a flood insurance policy.

In the event a hurricane is nearing, make sure your car’s gas tank is full and begin the process of securing your home. Protect windows, exterior doors and garage doors, and check that your generator works properly.

Plans for Pets

Many of us would not want to evacuate without our beloved pets, so when planning for each scenario, consider your furry friends, too. Research which shelters accept pets, contact hotels to learn their policies on pets in an emergency, and see if vets, boarding facilities or animal shelters provide emergency shelter for pets if you must.

cleaning up after a disaster in florida

4. Remain vigilant

Keep an eye on the development of tropical storms and hurricanes. The National Hurricane Center can help keep you informed.

It’s also important to stay in touch with family members, ensure they have a plan in place and are as prepared as possible. For more information on taking action before a hurricane strikes, or to read more about hurricane preparedness, check out the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s resources.

Download our hurricane preparedness checklist!

Florida Hurricane Preparedness Is a High Priority at East Ridge at Cutler Bay

At East Ridge at Cutler Bay, we’re ready in the event of a hurricane, taking the need to prepare off the shoulders of our residents and their families. Here, we:

  • Are prepared to deal with hurricanes with a plan of action
  • Have backup generators in case of lost power
  • Have additional fuel reserves on site
  • Offer the peace of mind of support if needed

To learn more about our community that’s prepared for any sort of weather, visit our website or schedule a tour.