On Farm Hurricane Preparation
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Each year in North Carolina there is always the potential for us to deal with a large hurricane that brings huge rainfall events and high winds. The best defense we have against hurricanes is to prepare and have a plan in place. Creating farm emergency action plans that include farm maps, access routes, and inventories are essential to helping us be prepared. Meteorologists and satellites are able to predict the path and severity of hurricanes but these storms can come quickly so preparing early is always the best option. I would like to share a few suggestions for hurricane preparedness on the farm.
- Generators – Routine and preventative maintenance to your farm generators is essential and they should be in working order leading up to a hurricane. Draining your small generators of old gas from previous hurricane seasons and firing up all generators to make sure they still run well is suggested so maintenance issues don’t arise when you need it the most during or just after the storm. It is also a good idea to consider having a backup generator depending on individual circumstances.
- Fuel – Storing plenty of fuel on the farm is vital to be used for generators, tractors, trucks, etc. It is always better to have too much fuel stored than not enough. During the weeks leading up to the storm and after, fuel can be extremely difficult to acquire and possibly more expensive.
- Debris – It is always a good idea to scout around your farm and locate any old or damaged trees likely to fall during the storm and remove any debris that could hinder drainage ditches from draining properly. Also, secure all objects that could be blown around easily and cause damage to structures and equipment.
- Electronics/Batteries – Communication and weather monitoring is important especially leading up to and after a storm and can be difficult if the power goes out. Cell phones, tablets, and laptops should be in good working order and fully charged leading up to a hurricane. Having a portable radio, flashlights, plenty of batteries, battery packs, and power banks, can be essential as well.
As we continue this hurricane season, we can all hope that we will not have to deal with a damaging hurricane; but if one does come our way, we will be ready and prepared to tackle the challenges we face.