Bonita Springs Hurricane Checklist

Bonita Springs Hurricane Comfort Items

With first-hand experience, the Griffith family and the great members of the Bonita Springs Estero Community Forum were nice enough to help contribute to a list of newly discovered hurricane essential items and conveniences that they wished they had during Hurricane Irma. Most of us replenished our hurricane supplies immediately after the storm.  As soon as UPS trucks were running my Amazon boxes were being dropped off.  The easy to find items were picked up at Home Depot on Bonita Beach Road and Sunshine Ace Hardware store which is also on Bonita Beach Road.

Most items listed below are basic tips for things you may have never considered or items that can be purchased at big box stores and, of course, on Amazon.

  • Bonita Springs Hurricane BatteryTrim your trees, tell your neighbors to trim their trees. Overgrown trees take down power lines, fences and damage homes and cars. We had gone over a decade without a major hurricane so there were some big trees that should have been manicured.
  • Battery operated radio/Eton radio.
  • Fan … most especially a quiet fan; battery operated if you don’t have a generator.
  • Battery back up packs for phones, kindle and tablets. Power banks.  Solar battery backup.  We had several Jackery brand and they were reliable and we didn’t run out of juice.
  • Sweat bands for wrist and head.  Tools, saws, hammers slip when you’re sweaty and trying to get work done.
  • Propane Coleman camping stove with lots of propane. We actually ordered electric coil hot plates from Amazon and used them with the generator.
  • More gas for generators.  What you think is enough isn’t enough. Post storm stations without electric can’t pump.  Stations with gas, didn’t have electric.  People fist fight for gas.  It’s true.
  • Chain/lock up your generator or it will be stolen.
  • Small ice machine to plug into generator.
  • Rope and clothes pins.
  • Buckets to catch water, to catch leaking ceilings, to scoop lake/pool water to flush toilets, to clean up flood water.
  • Cleaning supplies, especially bleach.
  • There were several recommendations for wine, gin, beer, basically any alcohol. ;-) 
  • If you live on a lake hurricane force winds will blow the lake water through your home.  Saw it with my own eyes!
  • Address book and/or Hand written telephone numbers and addresses.  If your phone is dead you can’t retrieve phone numbers or addresses and many of us don’t remember them.
  • Battery lamp – Brooklyn Lantern brand was recommended.
  • Lots of tiny flash lights so everyone can have one. We had the 2 for $9.99 from Amazon. 1 AA battery needed.
  • Work gloves for moving debris. Rubber gloves for moving gross stuff.
  • Water purification straw, tablets, more water.
  • A window a/c AKA wall shaker that could be plugged into a generator.
  • More small bills; $1, $5, $10. It’s cash only when the power is out, but stores are open.
  • Better brand of cooler such as Yeti.
  • A silicone pot cover to put over bath tub drain to keep it from leaking.
  • A kiddie pool with sod in it so the dog can go potty.
  • Wellies/boots.
  • Do every scrap of laundry before the storm.  Sewers back up without electricity.
  • Face mask for dust/mold; surgical mask or dust mask.
  • First aid kit.
  • Glow sticks for safety and to keep little kids occupied.
  • More liquid hand sanitizer, wipe/toilets for the bathrooms and kitchen areas.
  • Hire a home watch service if you are outside of the area.
  • Have at least one 4WD or vehicle with higher clearance per family.
  • Trash bags, yard waste bags and twine to bundle branches.

Bonita Springs Life Post Hurricane Irma

Bonita Springs GeneratorHomes “on the same grid” as shelters get electric first. Communities with underground utilities get electric faster and sometimes don’t lose it. There were Bonita Springs residents who went weeks without power and air conditioning.  That was actually a fast electric restoration in the grande scheme of massive hurricane damage.  It's the rest of recovery that is slow. The trades will run out of materials; screening, roofing materials, glass.  There will be mountains of debris; contents of homes that were flooded and piles of downed trees for months and months after a major hurricane. 

The Griffith family both personally and professionally realized that we should have asked family, friends and clients to not hammer us with phone calls and to not expect us to run errands or check on their homes because having fuel is like having gold.  The phones blew up when we finally got signal. 

Many folks not “living the dream” will quickly but  inadvertently squander your resources … such as depleting battery life and fuel which runs precious generators and cars. Even if the home they wanted us to check had a roof leak or any other issue there is nothing that could have done about it.  The city and the trade workers are rendered unable to function and they are in the same boat the rest of us are in. We also couldn’t download files, photos, screenshots or v-cards so those were useless to receive and just caused our phones to work extra hard draining batteries faster.

To see the full list of regular hurricane items on a hurricane checklist read also:

Ready Your Bonita Springs Home for Hurricane Season and also read this manifesto about storm shutters: Storm Shutters Tips For Your Bonita Springs Florida Home

If you have any items you'd like to add to this list please leave a comment with your tips!