Because of its geographical location, the Philippines is vulnerable to tropical cyclones, which usually generate heavy rains and flooding over huge regions, as well as strong winds, resulting in substantial casualties as well as crop and property destruction. As a result, it is critical to have a complete understanding of such archipelagic occurrences to protect your home and your loved ones. Moreover, the rainy season in the Philippines can be devastating, and condominium unit residents are not completely impervious to the challenging and burdensome destruction that a massive storm can cause. Successful planning and preparation are the ideal ways to prevent these difficult yet naturally-occurring situations. Continue reading this article to know the best practices on how to prepare your condo for a typhoon.
Read also: 10 Tips to Prepare for Strong Typhoons
Typhoon season in the Philippines
A typhoon is a large storm system with a spiral or circular system of violent winds that can span hundreds of miles or kilometers. The winds are spiraling around a low-pressure area. Once maximum wind speeds surpass 85 miles per hour, or 140 kilometers per hour, a distinctive feature known as the “eye” forms. The eye is a few tens of kilometers in diameter and consists of clear air with no clouds. Typhoons get their energy from the evaporation of warm ocean waters. Liquid water ascends to the peak of the typhoon and condenses along the sides of its eye, where it condenses into clouds. Stronger typhoons are caused by the relatively warm ocean water which can develop into what we call “super typhoons.”
The science of typhoons is based on the equilibrium between the low pressure at the center of the storm and the Coriolis force caused by the earth’s rotation. Typhoons can form only at latitudes greater than about 10 degrees north or south of the Earth’s equator because the Coriolis force is zero at the equator. When observed from above, the wind gusts in a typhoon spiral counter-clockwise in the northern hemisphere due to the Coriolis force. In the southern hemisphere, the winds spiral counterclockwise.
Read Also: What government assistance you can claim after a natural calamity?
Most tropical cyclones are making landfall in the Philippines compared to anywhere else on the entire globe. With an average of 20 tropical cyclones passing through this geographical area each year, somewhere around 8 or 9 of these cross the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR). Since the typhoon season is at its high point from July until October, as almost seventy percent (70%) of all typhoons form, it is important to have sufficient knowledge on how to prepare your condo for a typhoon.
Seven (7) you can do to prepare your condo for a typhoon:
1. Prepare a disaster and first aid kit.
The installations in your condo are not the sole aspects of importance when it comes to how to prepare your condo for a typhoon. Keep in mind you have enough first-aid supplies, food, and batteries. Over-the-counter medications such as paracetamol, antihistamines, aspirins, antibiotics, and aspirin are required in every home. During most of the rainy season, coughs and colds are prevalent.
Power failures are unavoidable during natural disasters. Load up on energy bars, bread, vegetables and fruits, and other non-cooking items. Every household should have an emergency light since this is more secure than candles.
2. Install storm or rolling shutters on your unit windows.
The regular maintenance of your condominium unit is entirely your responsibility although the condominium administration is accountable for the upkeep of the building structures and common spaces on behalf of the condominium unit owners. The maintenance is funded mostly by association dues as well as other fees collected from each unit owner. A huge benefit of residing in a condominium is that there is no roof to replace or maintain. Hence, it is crucial to examine your windows. Damage can be reduced by using double-pane windows. It is more resistant to shattering than single-pane windows. One such window care can also aid in the comfort of your home. It has two panes with air trapped between them. The air acts as a safeguard against extreme heat and cold. One other suggestion is to set up permanent storm shutters to keep windows from breaking during devastating natural disasters.
3. Examine your electrical system.
Power quality problems and electrical issues are highly probable during a typhoon. To prepare for an incoming typhoon, inspect your condo for heating electrical wires and malfunctioning sockets that are susceptible to water damage. If the power goes out during a typhoon, turn off your lights and remove the plug of your household devices to prevent damage or overstretching their own circuit design. Ruined wires are one of the leading reasons for unforeseen fire accidents, so keep an eye out for them.
4. Check for leaks in your condo unit.
Regularly inspecting your home for necessary replacements and improvements should be a habit. Keep in mind that oversight can cost you a lot of money. Outside flooding isn’t your only concern. You should also inspect your home for leaks that could cause flooding, severely damage furniture and appliances, and boost your utility bill.
Many red flags can be related to leaks, which you should be consistently watchful for and use as a signal to notify your nearby plumber and have them repaired. Severe leaks can be identified by unexpectedly high water bills, poor water pressure, and the growth of mold and mildew.
5. Keep a phone contact list of emergency hotlines handy.
Even if your entire condo has been typhoon-proofed, you may still encounter unforeseen issues. Hold a list of contacts of your family members to stay informed concerning their present predicament and to keep them up-to-date on yours. This contact list should include the mobile or landline phone numbers of each family member, the condo’s helpdesk, and police and emergency unit helplines.
6. Create a family emergency plan and familiarize the emergency exits of your condominium.
Each and every safety precaution during a disaster necessitates mental alertness. Advise family members on what they should do if a risk is recognized. It is recommended that everyone participate in a drill to practice evacuation plans in the case of an emergency. Often your early age children should be aware of where the emergency exit is.
7. Keep yourself updated and remain indoors.
Family safety always comes first. Stay inside during and immediately after a natural disaster. Leave the house only when absolutely necessary. Follow the most up-to-date news from government agencies and news networks to prepare how to prepare your condo for a typhoon. Prepare for necessary internet connection issues during disasters. For emergency purposes, you should have a battery-powered radio. Disasters, both man-made and natural, are pretty much inevitable. This does not, however, imply that you are completely helpless. Natural occurrences are not always unpredictable. Keep track of the most recent weather reports. Knowing how to prepare your condo for a typhoon can help you avoid shortfalls and serious harm from the storm. Conduct routine inspections for necessary replacements and upgrades. More saliently, train family members on how to stay safe before, during, and after disasters.
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Written by MC Sanchez