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(CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas) — With millions of people potentially in the path of Hurricane Harvey and some mandatory evacuations issued in Texas, certain steps can be taken ahead of the storm to protect your home and property from damage.

The hurricane is set to make landfall in Texas early Saturday morning, which gives people who are not in evacuation zones some time to prepare.

What to do outside

According to Ready.gov, the disaster-preparedness website run by the Department of Homeland Security, several steps can help to mitigate damage to the exterior of your home.

Trimming nearby trees and getting rid of loose limbs that could be ripped off in hurricane-force winds is one step that can be taken months in advance.

Securing loose rain gutters and cleaning them out can prevent a buildup of debris that could lead to flooding.

Officials also recommend boarding up windows and doors, and securely locking any hurricane shutters on your property.

Setting up inside

For those staying in their homes, some key supplies can be purchased ahead of time, such as portable generators that should be kept dry and outside of the main house, ideally in a shed or garage.

Bottled water and nonperishable food are key supplies. Access to clean water may be limited for several days, and it may not be possible to leave your home for more supplies. Canned food is a good option, and make sure to have a manual can opener.

Protect important documents and paper items from flooding by storing them in a dry, safe place, ideally either on an upper floor or in a higher location on a lower floor.

Prepare a first-aid kit, and make sure that any necessary medications are available in sufficient amounts to carry individuals through multiple days.

In prior hurricanes, FEMA has recommended that homeowners unplug electronic equipment — including computers, televisions and wireless routers — and move them to a safe place. Even if households have surge protectors, lightning strikes could be hazardous.

Officials have also recommended rolling up area rugs and storing them on higher floors to reduce the chance of mold.

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