Preparing for Hurricanes and Other Natural Disasters

Florida is particularly prone to dangerous weather and other natural disasters. From hurricanes and tornados to flooding and fire, Condominium Owners must take special precautions to protect themselves and their property.

Here are a few disaster preparation tips:

  • Watch the Weather — Remaining aware of the weather conditions is vital for Florida Homeowners. Make sure you understand the various watches and warnings issued by the National Weather Service. Even if it seems like a hurricane has already passed by, you could still be in danger from tornados.
  • Understand and Minimize the Risks to Your Home — Depending on the particular location and construction of your Condominium building and Unit, your home may be vulnerable to storm surge, high winds, flooding and other types of damage. Check with your Association ahead of time to ensure that your windows will have hurricane shutters or that other protective measures will be taken.
  • Create an Emergency Plan — Now is the time to make important decisions. Where will your family members gather if a disaster should strike? How will you communicate if the phone lines are down? Will it be safe to stay in your home, or should you plan to evacuate? If you need to evacuate, be sure to leave as soon as the local officials order it.
  • Gather Emergency Supplies — The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) provides a detailed list of supplies you should have on hand in case of a disaster. In addition to the obvious considerations such as nonperishable food and bottled water, it is important to make sure you will have enough prescription medications, batteries and other items.

If you or an older family member is living alone in a Florida Condominium, you will likely need to make additional preparations. The " Disaster Preparedness Guide for Elders," published by Florida's Department of Elder Affairs provides useful information.

If you have any dispute with your Condominium Association either prior to or following a natural disaster, feel free to contact Fort Lauderdale attorney Debra Lynn Fein at 954-533-0825.