This RV Tip was sent in by Joe Schembri of Tampa, FL. Joe writes about home RVs and offers various tips including safety. Please don’t get caught in the next storm and always think safety first.
Hurricanes and other major storms can be terrifying for all involved. However, these situations can be even more frightening for people who own an RV. Whether or not you live in your RV full time, a hurricane can cause serious damage to your vehicle. There are safety precautions that must be followed to keep your RV, and more importantly, your family safe.
What to do to protect your belongings
Before anything else, plan an evacuation route so that you are not caught off guard if the need to evacuate should arise. You should also plan on where you park your RV in the case of an evacuation, somewhere safe from flooding if possible. Find a parking area that is in an elevated location clear of large trees. Check in to make sure that your insurance policy covers hurricanes. If it does not, you should update your policy right away. Place all of your important documents in waterproof packaging and videotape and/or photograph all of your belongings so that you can show them in case of an emergency.
Prepping for an emergency is all about determining what you need if you are faced with power outages, road closures or other setbacks. Start with buying nonperishable foods, stocking up on water and assuring that you have any prescriptions needed to keep you healthy. Remember to not just get water for drinking, but for cooking, flushing the toilet, washing yourself and brushing your teeth.
Check the entire vehicle for safety, from the fire and carbon monoxide alarms to the fuel tank, tires and windshield wipers. Buy the supplies you will need if damage is done, like garbage bags, spare batteries, tarps and oil operated lamps. A radio that runs on batteries can alert you to dangers even if the power goes out. A little air conditioning unit that runs on a generator can help you become more comfortable. Consider applying security laminate to the windows of your RV. This not only protects the windows, but the entire interior of your RV.
In case of an evacuation
If you have to evacuate, do not hesitate to follow the command. However, be careful while you make your way out. Do not drive through water, as this can damage your engine. These roads also run the risk of collapse. Get rid of branches or other heavy objects that could do damage if thrown into the air in high winds. Also, secure your outside items like grills or lawn tables and chairs. Even small items can wreak havoc in hurricane force winds, so do not leave anything behind. Don’t forget to turn off propane cylinders and empty holding tanks. Cover the vents, the air conditioning system and the regulator.
Dealing with an evacuation can be worrisome and stressful, but it is necessary to keep your family safe. Staying prepared is the key to assuring that your RV and your loved ones are unharmed at the end of the storm.