The Loose Canon
Prepare Now for Hurricane Season
||Hurricane Clean Up at Honey Creek
Hurricane Season starts Friday, but the first named storm of the season has already blown through. While the coast is especially vulnerable, we know tornados spawned by a storm heading up through Georgia or even western Alabama can be just as devastating. There are some critical steps you can take in the coming week that will alleviate last minute concerns.
Forms like this set
Church Inventory Forms
offer a way to get down serial numbers for your more expensive office equipment and other key data that will assist if the church suffers damage. Once forms are completed, make a few hard copies to share among leaders. Best practice is also to scan the forms and place as a Google Doc, in DropBox, or another online storage site so they can be accessible from any computer once the storm has passed. In addition to these paper forms, record a smart phone video of church offices, narrating the equipment, and get photos of the church organ or other high cost items and place these at an online storage site. These will be invaluable to assist in making an insurance claim.
Identify Potentially Vulnerable Parishioners
Identify senior citizens, disabled persons, single mothers, and those living alone. Add any families living in trailers, or in low lying areas prone to flooding. Have a plan for who will contact these persons in order to insure that they are in safe areas. To the degree we can, the Diocese will assist in identifying locations in safe areas with churches and homes open to those who need assistance. Make sure everyone you assist in leaving their homes has needed medicines.
Update AlertMedia Contacts
The Diocese will once again use the
system to remain in touch with parish leaders. Clergy should always keep the Diocese up to date on email and phone numbers. Completing the form in the article above on Wardens and Vestry will permit us to add the Junior and Senior Warden to the contacts for that system.
Work on a Comprehensive Preparedness Plan
The above are a few minimal steps you can take now.
If a storm path looks like it could impact your congregation and you don't have a plan, the Diocese of Southeast Florida has created emergency plans with their
11th Hour Checklist
. But we do have time and t
his should serve as a reminder that every congregation needs a Disaster Preparedness Plan. To help in this process, we recommend this guide from Episcopal Relief and Development:
Disaster Preparedness Planning Guide
While Georgia may once again be spared the catastrophe we have seen elsewhere, we do know that some Episcopal churches will be hit by natural disasters each year. We owe it to one another to prepare.
The Rev. Frank Logue
Canon to the Ordinary