Longtime Islanders Share Hurricane Prep Tips

Kristie Anders shares tips on being prepared for a hurricane.

Kristie Anders, along with her husband Red, shared their tips on being prepared for a hurricane with the Sanibel Captiva Lions Club at the regular dinner meeting Wednesday, July 18, at the Sanibel Community House.

“We lived on North Captiva (Island) for 22 years and rode out Hurricane Charley in 2004 there,” said Kristie. “These are some things we have learned over the years.”

Kristie brought solar panels of varying sizes and solar chargers, some of which also provide light for when the power goes out. She recommended a hand-crank weather radio to stay informed and a VH radio to stay in touch without cell phone reception. When there is no water, use baby wipes to clean up and remember to turn off the sprinkler system – important for when water is restored.

“Don’t forget the chocolate,” said Kristie with a smile.

Red recommended having a battery-operated Skill saw for clearing the driveway or a path. “It will cut through up to two inches and the battery will last a while these days,” he said. The Anders promoted LED bulbs for their requirement of little power and dry ice to keep things cold for up to three days longer. “If you require coffee, we have found a French press gets the job done without electricity,” said Kristie.

In addition to helpful tools, Kristie debunked common myths such as leaving important documents in the dishwasher or using the washing machine as a cooler. “Don’t do it,” she said. Kristie also warned about storm surges which are caused by wind behind the water. She and Red recommended evacuating to Zone 5, near the Regional Southwest Airport. “The newer hotels with interior hallways are best,” said Kristie.

Those with special needs should contact F.I.S.H. of SANCAP in advance for assistance in the event of an evacuation. Contact the organization for more information by phone at 239-472-4775 or visit the Walk-in Center at 2430 Periwinkle Way, Sanibel.

“We couldn’t think of two people who know more about these islands,” said Sanibel Captiva Lions President Bob Kern. “They provided exceptional tips and we appreciate them taking their time to share them.”

The next guest speaker will be Dr. Mike Cullen, who will discuss pancreatic cancer, at the Aug. 15 meeting. The Sanibel Captiva Lions Club meets the first and third Wednesday of each month at 6 p.m. for social hour with dinner catered by Sanibel Catering Company at 7 p.m.

Visiting Lions and guests are welcome. Non-Lions can hear the guest speaker free of charge, but those wishing to join for dinner at $15 each should call or text either Lion Steve Schulz at 239-233-6261 or Lion Jeff MacDonald at 302-521-1158.