Surviving Hurricane Season

Be Prepared!

First, it’s essential to know the definitions and standard terms that are associated with a hurricane. There are many different types of storms, and their intensity is what classifies them as a tropical depression, tropical storm or hurricane. Tropical depressions are cyclones with winds of 38 mph. Tropical storms can vary in wind speeds of 39-73 mph, while hurricanes have wind speeds of 74 mph or higher. 

Terms you may hear

  • Tropical Storm Watch – Tropical storm conditions are possible.
  • Hurricane Watch – Hurricane conditions are possible. Watches are issued 48 hours in advance of the anticipated onset of tropical storm force winds.
  • Tropical Storm Warning – Tropical storm conditions are expected.
  • Hurricane Warning – Hurricane conditions are expected.
  • Eye – The center of the storm.
  • Eyewall – Surrounds the eye of the storm and contains severe weather conditions.
  • Rain bands – Bands coming off the storm that cause severe weather conditions.
  • Storm surge – Ocean water swelling as a result of a landfalling storm.
Everyone should be prepared for anything that can happen during a storm. Having adequate supplies is essential when a hurricane is approaching. Make sure you go to your local store to stock up on supplies well in advance to avoid the widespread panic. 

Items to purchase

  • Non-perishable food (enough to last at least 3 days)
  • Water (enough to last 3 days)
  • First-aid kit
  • Flashlights
  • Battery operated radio
  • Cooler and ice packs
  • Evacuation plan
  • Plenty of recreational items to pass the time
  • Generator
  • Gas

Securing your home

  • Cover all windows with hurricane shutters or wood.
  • Make sure all trees and shrubs are trimmed to avoid damage from falling limbs.
  • Bring all outdoor furniture inside.
  • Consider parking your car in a car garage.

Preparing for power outages

  • Have plenty of gas in your car and stored in gas tanks.
  • Have enough cash on hand for emergencies.
  • Fill your bathtub and large containers with water for washing and flushing only.
  • The CDC has created a guide to staying safe in the event of a power outage.
Keeping your family and yourself safe during a storm should be your number one priority. For a downloadable checklist, please visit the American Red Cross.This blog used “The essential guide to hurricane preparedness” by Christine Harrison as a reference.