Getting Ready for a Hurricane
A hurricane is a type of tropical cyclone or severe tropical storm that forms in the southern Atlantic Ocean,
Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico, and in the eastern Pacific Ocean. A typical cyclone is accompanied
by thunderstorms, and in the Northern Hemisphere, a counterclockwise circulation of winds near the earth’s
surface. All Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico coastal areas are subject to hurricanes.
Hurricanes can cause catastrophic damage to coastlines and several hundred miles inland. Hurricane can
produce winds exceeding 155 miles per hour as well as tornadoes and mircrobursts. Floods and flying
debris from the excessive winds are often the deadly and destructive results of these weather events.
To begin preparing, you should build a an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
Know your sunoundings.
Learn the elevation level of your property and whether the land is flood-prone. This will
help you know how your roperty will be affected when storm surge or tidal flooding are
Identify levees and dams in your area ana determine whether they pose a hazard to you.
Learn community hurricane evacuation routes and how to find higher ground.
To learn more about your flooding risk and how to protect yourself an your business, visit
the Federal insurance and Mitigation Administration (NFIP) Website,
www.floodsmart.gov or call 1-800-427-2419.
During a Hurricane
Listen to the radio or TV for infonnation.
Secure your home, close storm shutters and secure outdoor objects or bring them indoors.
Turn off utilities if instructed to do so. Otherwise, turn the refrigerator thermostat to its
coldest setting and keep its doors closed.
Turn off propane tanks.
A void using the phone, except for serious emergencies.
Moor your boat if time permits.
Ensure a supply of water for sanitary purpose such as cleaning and flushing toilets. Fill
the bathtub and other larger containers with water.
FEMA recomends 3 days ration of food per person, select foods that require no refrigeration and
2 gallons of water a day per person.
If you live in a mobile home or temporary structure – such shelter are particularly
hazardous during hurricane no matter how well fastened to the ground.
If you live in a high-rise building- hurricane winds are stronger at higher elevations.
If you live on the coast, on a flooplain nea a river, or on an island waterway.
Read more about evacuating yourself and your family. If you are unable to evacuate, go
to your wind-safe room. lf you do not have one, follow these guidelines:
Be sure you are well supplied with any prescription drugs that you or your family take on
a regular basis.
Stay indoors during the hurricane and away from windows and glass doors.
Close-all interior doors – secure and brace external doors.
After a Hurricane
Drive only if necessary and avoid flooded roads and washed out bridges. Stay off the
streets. If you must go out watch for fallen objects; downed electrical wires; and
weakened walls, bridges, roads, and sidewalks.
Walk carefully around the outside your home and check for loose power lines, gas leaks
and structural damage before entering.
Stay out of any buildin if you smell gas, floodwaters remain around the building or your
homne was damaged by fire and the authorities have not declared it safe.
Inspect your home for damage.
Use battery-powered flashlights in the dark. Do NOT use candles. Note: The flashlight
should be tumed on outside before ente1ing – the battery may proaduce a spark that could
ignite leaking gas if present.
Check refrigerated food for spoilage.