Clear yard before hurricane's winds make lawn furniture into projectiles

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In the hours you have before the rain and winds move in, homeowners can take steps to limit any damage Hurricane Florence might do.

Check the trees in your yard. Prune dead branches that are weak enough to break off when the wind picks up.

Clear debris from storm drains, and do a quick check of your rain gutters. Any clogs there will back up onto your property, creating flooding.

If you have an irrigation system or automatic sprinklers, turn it off so that you don’t risk flooding should a water line break.

Put your trash can in the garage so it can’t blow away.

Pull anything from your yard that can become a projectile and smash through a window or worse. That includes lawn furniture and grills but also smaller items like decorations, planters, hanging baskets, bird feeders and wind chimes.

Remember to put away or secure swing sets and basketball hoops. If it can collapse and be stored, store it before the storm hits.

If you run out of space, wedge items behind hedges or anywhere where they will be protected from the wind. Lay large potted plants on their sides. Group pots close together to help secure them.

Inside the garage, it’s a good idea to move pesticides, cleaning chemicals and motor fuels as high off the ground as possible. If the garage floods, you don’t want them to contaminate the water.