Thank you to the #WindowsChampions program for providing me with a new Lenovo Yoga & tablet to learn more about Windows 8. All opinions are strictly my own
Yes, I moved to South Florida to get away from the cold, snow and ice, but of course no area is without weather issues and the coast of Florida is no exception.
The Florida hurricane season began on June 1 and runs through November 30, 2014. This means that for the entire season my garage is stocked with bottled water, canned food, batteries, candles, sterno, and of course my hurricane shutters. As much as I hated blizzards, I am more afraid of hurricanes. We had damage to our third floor condo from the storms when we first moved here and after that I left the coast to move 15 miles inland. No more beachfront for me.
Not only do we have to stock food and light supplies. But, the car must have a full tank in case we need to make an exit, and I’m always sure to have a back-up battery charged for my mobile phone.
Once a storm hits, your family is going to need to communicate. Social media and texting are quick and effective ways to communicate. To aid the effort, Microsoft launched HelpBridge, an app designed to help people connect with one another, and with volunteer and donation opportunities, during any type of disaster. HelpBridge is a free cross-platform mobile application (Windows, Android, iOS) that provides you with the ability to send status updates to pre-selected contact groups via email, SMS, Twitter and Facebook. Through your phone’s GPS capabilities you can also choose whether to share your location in your alerts.
- Microsoft released an update to the app including a new easy to navigate User Interface and push notifications.
One of the best ways you can weather the storm is to prepare for it. Microsoft Excel offers several free templates, including emergency contact lists and family emergency plans. Remember to plan for senior citizens and pets in your household, and communicate this plan to family and friends so they are aware. Your plan can be accessed during a disaster by saving it to a cloud service, like OneDrive on Windows orWindows Phone, so you can access your documents on any computer or smartphone – even when Internet access is not available.
The United States Department of Homeland Security has a number of resources and games that make disaster preparedness planning easy for the entire family, including Facebook application, bReddi, which can help your family prepare for emergencies. The American Red Cross and FEMA provide preparation guidance and status information for various types of natural disasters, including hurricanes as well.
Quick and reliable access to your health and medical information is important to ensure the appropriate medical aid during a natural disaster. HealthVault on Windows andWindows Phone helps you gather, store, use, and share important health information for you and your family by creating an emergency profile. Here you can manage and track your family’s medical contacts, allergies, medication, immunizations, and health conditions. Your medical providers can securely log in and see a full picture of your history and medical needs.