Coastal states in India like West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh and Odisha along with Andaman and Nicobar Islands are bracing for cyclone Yaas. The cyclonic storm is expected to make landfall on Wednesday this week, May 26, 2021. It is important for residents in these regions to prepare accordingly to avoid major inconveniences. Cyclones usually cause disruptions in power and water supply. Also, telecommunications, internet services and other essential services may also get affected during a cyclone. Here are a few things you must take care of while preparing for cyclone Yaas.
Keep your smartphones and power banks fully charged: It is important to keep all smartphones and power banks fully charged, so that you don’t run out of battery while making crucial calls. Also, it may be a good idea to keep a backup phone fully charged and switched off. Or, if you don’t have a spare handset, switch off one phone of any one of your family members and keep it for emergency use.
Disable 4G and use 2G on your phone to save battery: Use internet only when required during the cyclone and switch to 2G from 4G networks on your phone to save battery. It is also a good idea to switch on low power mode or power saving mode and use it at minimal brightness.
Backup copies of all important files and documents on Google Drive or any other cloud service: It is advisable that you keep a backup of all important files and documents on Google Drive or any other cloud storage like OneDrive, iCloud, etc. Also, ensure that the physical copies of these documents are well secured inside a water proof pouch. For government IDs and other documents, you may also use DigiLocker to save them online.
Use a portable Wi-Fi hotspot, if possible: In case of power cuts, your home Wi-Fi will stop working as most routers/modems need a power source. In this case, having a portable mobile hotspot with rechargeable battery will come handy when you need to use internet services.
Save offline Google Maps of your area along with addresses and phone numbers of rescue centres: If you use an Android smartphone, it is always a good idea to save an offline map of your city on Google Maps. You can use this map during an emergency when you do not have access to the internet. Also, don’t forget to mark the location of rescue centres on Google Maps and save emergency contact numbers of emergency government services and local NGOs.
Secure your mobile phone if it’s not waterproof: It’s a good idea to get waterproof pouches to protect your phone from water contact in case it’s not waterproof.
Emergency light source: Prepare an emergency light source as well. Instead of buying expensive battery-powered lights, you may opt for LED lights that work with power banks and can be attached to your mobile phone too. It is also a good idea to invest in a rechargeable LED light lamp that can be charged through a power bank as well.