Say hello to Teddy: how to prepare for a hurricane

With a hurricane heading to Halifax for the second September in a row, here’s what you need to know to prepare for Teddy.

As if this year had not been enough of a whirlwind, Haligonians are getting ready to welcome Hurricane Teddy. With a landfall projected on the night of Tuesday Sept. 22 through Wednesday, here is everything you need to know about how to prepare and what to expect.

Some of us were in Halifax last year when Hurricane Dorian made its way through. As of Sept. 20, meteorologists are saying that Teddy will not bring as much damage as Dorian did. The main reason being, by the time Teddy reaches us it will be a Post Tropical Storm. This means the impact zone will be larger, but the winds will not.

When the Canadian Hurricane Center warned people to keep an eye on Teddy on Sept. 24, his predicted path was going to lead him straight through Nova Scotia, in a similar path to the one Hurricane Juan took in 2003. An update on Sunday Sept. 20, shows that Teddy will likely turn east and head straight for Newfoundland and Labrador. But, there is still a possibility it could make landfall anywhere between Halifax and Cape Breton. 

How to be hurricane ready:

Check The Canadian Hurricane Centre

They are providing hourly updates on their social media about Teddy’s predicted path. It is good to keep an eye out for this since the damage will be smaller if Teddy doesn’t end up making landfall in Nova Scotia.

The power will most likely go out

For those of us that have lived in Halifax for a little bit, we are now used to this. The power goes out. A lot. Some people lost power for 5 days after Dorian. Even though Nova Scotia Power has taken precautions so that nothing of that intensity would happen again, you should be ready for at least 24 hours without power. If you are living in residence, you don’t have to worry—the University has a generator so you will be covered. If you are living off campus, it would be good for you to talk with your landlord about the usual length of power outages. 

Pre-download your lectures and readings

Since the hurricane is coming during the middle of the school week make sure to download your lectures and readings on your devices. Asynchronous lectures might not be cancelled, so might as well make sure you have this done.

Try to not open your fridge

When the power goes out, your fridge will be able to keep your food cooler if you do not open the door. Open for necessities and close right away.

Have a cooler and ice packs ready

If you have a lot of frozen food and want to avoid losing most of it, you need to be smart about how you store it. Have some ice packs in your freezer when the power goes out, and prioritize not opening it except when necessary. Even better, have a cooler with cooler packs in there—that way you will not let some of the cold out.

If your water supply does not come from the city, fill up your tub

Again, when the power goes out if your water doesn’t come from the city it will not be filtered. Since most people won’t be able to boil it, filling your tub with water is the next best solution. This is not only for drinking but to flush your toilet or wash your hands. Make sure to clean your tub before with non chemical products.

Have good snacks

Here is a list of personal favorite hurricane snacks: Golden Oreos, Lays chips (any flavour), popcorn, banana bread, chocolate chip cookies, Bounty, Tostitos with salsa or guacamole, Apples, Kiwis, Bananas, and I could keep on going forever. The way to find the right snacks is to choose them as if you were going to spend your day in a blanket fort. Foods that don’t need refrigeration are best.

Photo credits: Kheira Morellon. Some of the snacks to have on hand for Teddy.
Have a flashlight

If, like me, you do not have a flashlight, do yourself a favor and go get one! You will thank me once you realize this will give your phone battery a longer life. Also, stock up on batteries.

Check on your candle stock

If you are a night owl, candles will be your best friend. Not only will they save you if you do not have a flashlight, they will also set a nice atmosphere in your apartment. They also add heat to the room. Bonus point when you burn candles that smell like fall! But be smart, put them out before you fall asleep.

Download some movies

Even if your computer battery might not last much longer after you are done with your class work, download a movie you have been putting off. Netflix just released The Devil All The Time starring Tom Holland and Robert Pattinson! This is what I will be watching for sure. What better time than a hurricane to watch a good thriller?

Do some crafting

Fall is upon us, so lets make some crafty decorations. Yarn pumpkins are super cute in a living room or by a window. Do some collages with old magazines. Draw your street. Use any materials you might have left over from the beginning of quarantine and set your imagination free.

Prep meals for a few days

If you are able to prepare some meals in advance you won’t have to worry as much if your power takes time to come back. Meals like potato salad, lentils or anything that you don’t mind eating cold. And instead of losing some of the food you bought, you will be able to eat it all. By the way, chili is delicious cold!

To recap, stay safe, have a lot of food prepared, charge all of your electronics, and regularly check the news to see where Teddy is heading. Since it first formed, this hurricane has proven to be very indecisive as to which path it will take. Finally, if/when you go walking around in the aftermath, be observant and once more, stay safe.

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