What steps should I take when a hurricane watch/warning is posted?
Contributed by Neal Dorst
When a hurricane season starts -
The time to start your preparations is long before a hurricane watch is issued for your area. A good time to begin is during Hurricane Awareness Week, which occurs the week before hurricane season begins on June 1st. This is the time to make a hurricane plan or assess the one you have already formulated.
- Go through your hurricane supplies and replace any items that are outdated.
- Test your flash lights and other battery operated equipment.
- Check your shutters to ensure they're in good working condition. You may even want to deploy one or two to make sure they fit properly and you remember how they go up.
- Update any emergency numbers and phone numbers for family contacts outside the area.
- Pick up a hurricane preparedness brochure at the store and review it for pertinent tips and useful information.
When a hurricane watch is issued for your area -
Now is the time to double check your supplies, your shutters, and your plans.
- If there are any actions in your plan that need to be done long before you hunker down, now is the best time.
- You should get some cash from the bank or ATM and gas up your car.
- The longer you wait, the longer the lines will be, wasting your time.
When a hurricane warning is issued for your area -
Now is the time for action! Put up your shutters before the winds get too high.
- Clean up your yard and prep your pool.
- Lower your refrigerator temperature and fill up your bathtub and any extra jugs with water.
- If you are evacuating, prepare your property first then leave the area with plenty of time ahead since roads will become congested soon after the warning is issued.
This is just a general outline of actions you ought to take. Look at these Websites for more detailed safety plans:
Preparado para un huracan - Red Cross en Español
FEMA - Federal Emergency Management Agency
Last Updated : April 21, 2010