Preparing For a Hurricane and Other Windstorms

Hurricane viewed from outer space

Knowing what to do and how to prepare for unpredictable hurricanes, tornadoes and other windstorms will help protect you, your family and your home.

Before a Storm

  • Plan Ahead. It is important to create an emergency plan for your family. Your plan doesn’t need to be extensive, but it should cover the basic responsibilities of each family member, as well as resources available in the area should they be needed.
  • Remove loose objects. If a severe storm is in the forecast, close your windows and remove any objects surrounding your home that could become airborne during a windstorm, such as garbage bins, patio furniture, barbecues and yard debris.

During a Storm, Protect Your Family

  • Stay Low. The basement or lowest level of your home is safest. If you don’t have access to a basement, move to a small interior room such as a closet or bathroom, or take refuge under a flight of stairs.
  • Stay Inside. The inside of a building is the safest place during a windstorm. Avoid taking cover in the corner of a room as they attract flying debris. If you can’t find shelter inside a building, lie down in a ditch or ravine and use your arms to protect your head and neck. If you are in a vehicle, pull over and leave your vehicle for shelter, if possible. Stay away from bridges and overpasses.
  • Stay in the Know. Become familiar with your community’s severe weather warning system and make sure every member of your family knows what to do in case severe weather hits. In addition to your family’s emergency preparedness plan, learn about the emergency plans at your workplace, as well as at your children’s school and/or daycare.

While this article focusses on protection from high winds, it’s important to remember that torrential rainfall often comes with hurricanes. So be sure to review our tips to help prevent possible water damage.

For more information on windstorm safety, visit the Government of Canada’s public safety site.

Our Claims team remains ready to support you. If your home, vehicle, or property has been damaged by a storm, contact our Claims department:

Atlantic:
Toll free: 1.800.561.7222
Local: 506.859.7820

Alberta:
Toll free: 1.800.661.1577
Local: 403.974.8700

Ontario:
Toll free: 1.800.387.0462
Local: 905.477.5550

Quebec:
Toll free: 1.800.463.2813
Local: 514.351.5335