What 'worked' and did not work in your Storm Preps? - Page 3
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  1. #21
    Senior Member Gary M's Avatar
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    Somebody clocked the max wind gust in Key Largo at 130mph and I'm guessing that as Irma moved north, that when the winds swung around from the W-SW-S that the damage to the back (facing due south) of the house happened.

    We will research the fans next time down. If the still work, all we'll need are new blades.

    My GC and friend, Eric Ensign had his boys come over this past weekend to give the entire house a pressure cleaning...... just as they did before painting everything months ago. I had 90% of the shutters still closed to I told Eric to have the guys pressure clean the shutters, then open them and do the windows, frames, etc.

    In order for repairs:

    1) Replace the bent shutters.
    2) Repair the scratched new decking material from the shutters.
    3) Replace/rebuild the fish cleaning station and table.
    "Key Largo is too small to have a town drunk, so we all take turns."

  2. #22
    Senior Member Gary M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary M View Post
    This was the first time that I ever Evacuated.......so off we went and that was probably the best of all the things that we did!
    Because we had been paying attention to the Evac that was going on, we knew that getting gas would be critical. We had two choices for vehicles. 1) My Hyundai CUV that holds a lot of gear and gets about 25mpg, or 2) Jenn's much smaller Hybrid that gets 43mpg!

    I had some good quality gas cans that I had filled a day earlier so we opted for the Hybrid, knowing that gave us about a 700-750 mile range with using the 'long range tanks'.

    Shoved off from Laud at 0330 Friday, topped off at Ft Pierce before getting on the T-Pike. Exited at SR 60 near Vero and drove the pleasant and empty back roads coming in under Lakeland where we had a nice lunch.

    The Game Plan was to stay OFF I-75 and I-10 and with our booking in Panama City Beach, I hoped that the smaller roads would be less crowded. Wrong! Right before we shoved off, Gov Scott told everyone along the west coast to run for the hills as well and we got caught right in the middle of that exodus! Bumper-to-bumper for 10-20 miles at a time!

    Small gas stations were not only full with looong lines, but they had no gas. We stopped at one to find people sitting at the pumps, with no clue when they'd get gas. No clue.

    The line for the Rest Room was 50 feet long. Being dark, I found my own rest room off in a lonely corner near a side road. That's when I told Jenn, 'This is like the aftermath of a nuclear attack. Everyone running and no gas to be found."

    With her tank showing about 100 miles before 'Empty' at about 11pm, I saw up ahead a gas station that had two cop cars out if front with lights on and the cops standing outside. "Pull in behind this cop car and pull around to the right near that fence. I'll be a bit in the dark as I top off the car with our two gas cans", I told Jenn. I did not want to look 'obvious'....... The guy with the Jeep Cherokee right next to me was doing the same thing. No doubt we could have sold those cans for $100 a piece.......

    We stopped at another well lit gas station for a potty break and some food and coffee. A nice man walked up to the car. "Here's the situation. There is no gas here but the store is open. Rumor has it that a tanker truck will be here in 3-4 hours. Just so that you know...." It was near midnight.

    Dinner that night was stale coffee, a bag of Doritos and a small roll of donuts. I was grateful.

    We stopped at Perry, Florida at 0130 and went into an open Wal Mart so that Jenn could get some eye drops. The parking lot was jammed with RVs of all sizes. It was eery and I kept my head on a swivel in the parking lot.......

    I nearly hit a big deer on lonely (Hwy 20) south of Tallahassee. I was like driving down a pitch black tunnel. I now have seen a 'deer in the headlights'. Missed him by a foot..... maybe less.

    Getting into the outskirts of PC Beach, we saw an open gas station. We pulled in, topped off the car and the cans......

    At 0330 Sat morning we arrived at the huge condo building. Twenty-fours after we left the Laud house. We had seen and experienced things that we could have never imagined in our lives. "What's going to happen to all those folks with no gas if they have nowhere to hide when Irma is on top of them?", I asked?

    Next time, I'll prepare a lot earlier and if I feel that I want to Evac, I'll do it at least a day earlier........
    "Key Largo is too small to have a town drunk, so we all take turns."

  3. #23
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    We rode the storm out in Naples and were as prepared as possible for the storm and and after the storm. Some things that I don't normally do when we have storms coming that I did this time were:

    1. Filled 4 large coolers with ice. I had access to a big ice machine at work which made it easy. I was able to give ice away to people for up to a week who needed it. I also filled several large ziplock bags with ice and froze them in blocks in my freezers. This kept all kinds of things cold which was great. We had a boil water notice for almost two weeks after the storm which meant no ice unless you boiled the water first and then froze it. It was certainly a creature comfort but was very nice to have on the 8th day with no power.

    2. Borrowed a portable ac unit to hook to the generator. This was a huge plus being it was 90 degrees in the house for days after the storm. Kids slept with us on air mattresses in our bedroom and we ran the ac unit at night.

    3. Took all my food in my fridge and put it in a cooler and then put the cooler inside the refrigerator with big time ice packs in it. We rode the storm out at my brother's place and I didn't know how long it would take for me to get back to my house after the storm. I had a generator so I knew I could fire the refrigerators up when I get back to the house but I didn't know how long they would be without power until I got to them and was worried about losing all the food. Putting the food in the smaller space with big time ice packs saved everything. Food would have spoiled if I hadn't done that.

    4. Put braces on my fence gates. I screwed pieces of 2x6's to each side of the gates of my wooden fence. I have no doubt this saved the gates as the latches would of never held with the 100mph winds.

    5. Filled my boat with gas so I could siphon it out if needed for the car or the generators. I had 35 gallons of fuel in cans and both cars were full. Gas became a serious concern about day 4 after the storm, the generator had used all the fuel and both my house and neighbors needed more gas for the generators. Next time I'll have four or five more cans full. Gas was a serious problem down here the week after the storm, If we would of gotten a bigger storm gas would of been critical for at least two weeks after the storm. People were waiting up to 4 hours at the pumps for gas 5 days after the storm.

    6. Filled two large drinking coolers with good water from my refrigerator filter. Because we had the boil water notice we needed that water to make coffee, drink during the day etc... Kept us from drinking all the water bottles too fast.

    Things I would of done differently:

    1. Put sandbags in front of my garage. We didn't flood but because of the driving horizontal rain I had a bunch of rain come under the garage door.

    2. Bought an extra propane tank for the grill. Ours ran out after the 5th day. Fortunately we got power back quickly.

    All in all we were very fortunate. We had minor house damage but major tree damage. It was really nice to see my entire neighborhood outside helping each other pull trees out of living rooms, pools, driveways etc... Naples got hit pretty hard but it definitely could of been worse. My heart and prayers go out to the folks in Immokalee, Everglades City, and Big Pine/Marathon.

  4. #24
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    If I ever evacuate again, it will be with ten 5-gallon gas cans in the bed of the truck, and the tent and air mattress just in case.

  5. #25
    Senior Member Gary M's Avatar
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    Great stuff guys, thanks.
    "Key Largo is too small to have a town drunk, so we all take turns."

  6. #26
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    We're at 103 bayside in a 2 year old home. We rented a warehouse in Fl City for a month to store 2 non-running hot rods, a skiff and my car,, just in case the water rise was too much. Plan was to take the wife's truck pull the big boat and head off. When pulling the boat the trans blew. Keep in mind this is a 2013 truck so not that old. We decided to stay. House was fine,, outdoor fans not so much LOL. Also, it was a ton of work to move everything in my shop downstairs upstairs,, then back down. Granted we have an elevator but what a PITA. Again wasn't worth taking the chance of everything getting soaked in saltwater not to mention a couple of motors and transmissions becoming worthless. We didn't have a generator for after. That's been fixed as well as a small window AC that we can run. The 2nd, 3rd night was horrible with no air!!! Got two small inverter generators that will run a few lights, window AC and one refrig.
    __________________________________________________ ________________________________________________

    Fred


  7. #27
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    One thing I did learn, (small thing) I wish I would have taped all my door locks with zip lock bags. I had a hell of a time getting in any of my 3 locks. The salt water did not get that high but the wind driven salt did. I sprayed all of them and was able to get in a half hour later after really working at it.
    Marathon vacation home for rent

    http://www.floridakeyshomeforrent.com/

  8. #28
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    I learned hurricane prep after going through Hugo in Charleston. I was told one simple rule. If something is more than 1 square foot secure it or remove it.

  9. #29
    Senior Member Northern's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary M View Post
    Great stuff guys, thanks.
    X2! This thread has been great for covering all the stuff that isn't normally written about, but happens in the real world.

  10. #30
    Senior Member mustang190's Avatar
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    Gary the other mistake you made was not letting me know you were up here in Panama City. Would have shown you around. Had a cocktail or two.

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