Are You Ready for the Frankenstorm? Storm Tips and Resources from the BBB

October 26, 2012

Hurricane Sandy threatens to bring gale-force winds, flooding, heavy rain and maybe even snow to the tri-state region early next week.

BBB urges consumers and businesses in our area to prepare now for a weather emergency or disaster. Creating a disaster plan for what to do before, during and after an emergency may make a big difference to your safety and comfort.

BBB offers the following tips and resources to help consumers prepare.

Emergency Supply Kit

You may need to shelter in place (stay at home) during an emergency, such as a severe storm. Keep enough supplies in your home to last for at least three days:

  • One gallon of drinking water per person per day
  • Nonperishable, ready-to-eat foods and manual can opener
  • First-aid kit
  • Flashlight
  • Battery-operated AM/FM radio
  • Extra batteries
  • Phone that does not rely on electricity

The following items might also be very helpful in case of a very serious emergency.

  • Whistle (in case you are trapped in a collapsed building)
  • Iodine tablets or one quart of unscented bleach (for disinfecting water ONLY If directed to do so by health officials) and eyedropper (for adding bleach to


Evacuation “Go Bag”

Other emergencies may require evacuation from your home. BBB suggests having a Go Bag ready for every household member in an easy-to-carry container such as a backpack. Your Go Bags could include:

  • Copies of your important documents in a waterproof and portable container (insurance cards, photo IDs, proof of address, etc.)
  • Extra set of car and house keys
  • Change of clothing
  • Copies of credit/ATM cards and $50-$100 in cash in small denominations.
  • Bottled water and nonperishable food such as energy or granola bars
  • Flashlight
  • Battery-operated AM/FM radio
  • Extra batteries
  • Medications and doctors’ names and phone numbers
  • First aid kit
  • Contact and meeting place information for your household and a small local map
  • Child care, pet care, and other special items

The BBB recommends using FEMA’s website at to learn about the potential emergencies that could occur where you live and the appropriate ways to respond to them. When you know what to do, you can plan and prepare in advance to be ready. The FEMA website provides information about how to protect your household and begin recovery following the initial disaster.

Familiarize yourself with your local emergency alerts and warnings and how you will receive them. Knowing about the local emergency plans for shelter and evacuation, local emergency contacts, the locations frequented by members of your household and the specific needs of household members including animals will help you reduce the impact of damaging storms. It may also save lives and prevent injuries.

Storm Planning Resources

Ready New York: Hurricanes and New York City

NYC Office of Emergency Management

NY State Emergency Management Office

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA);

Department of Homeland Security

American Red Cross in Greater New York

National Hurricane Center/Tropical Prediction Center

National Weather Service

Notify NYC Register for emergency notifications by visiting - or call 311