The Atlantic hurricane season lasts from June to November, with the peak season from mid-August to late October. Hurricanes can produce heavy rainfall , winds and flooding several hundred miles inland.
To protect property and lives in any emergency everyone should be prepared. Build an emergency kit and make an emergency plan.
- Learn community hurricane evacuation routes and how to find higher ground. Determine where you would go and how you would get there if you needed to evacuate.
- Make plans to secure your property:
- Be sure trees and shrubs around your home are well trimmed so they are more wind resistant.
- Clear loose and clogged rain gutters and downspouts.
- Plan to bring in all outdoor furniture, decorations, garbage cans and anything else that is not tied down.
- Install a generator for emergencies.
- Ensure a supply of water for sanitary purpose such as cleaning and flushing toilets. Fill the bathtub and other larger containers with water.
- 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.
- Keep away from loose or dangling power lines and report them immediately to the power company.
- Walk carefully around the outside your home and check for loose power lines, gas leaks and structural damage before entering.
- Stay out of any building if you smell gas, floodwaters remain around the building or your home was damaged by fire and the authorities have not declared it safe.
- Inspect your home for damage. Take pictures of damage, both of the building and its contents, for insurance purposes. If you have any doubts about safety, have your residence inspected by a qualified building inspector or structural engineer before entering.
- Use battery-powered flashlights in the dark. Do NOT use candles. Note: The flashlight should be turned on outside before entering - the battery may produce a spark that could ignite leaking gas, if present.
- Check refrigerated food for spoilage. If in doubt, throw it out.
For more information on Hurricanes visit http://www.ready.gov/hurricanes.
For tips on creating an emergency kit and plan click on the Emergency Preparedness link above.