Before the Hurricane Season
- Determine safe evacuation routes inland.
- Learn location of official shelters.
- Make emergency plans for pets.
- Check emergency equipment, such as flashlights, generators and battery-powered NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards and cell phones.
- Buy food that will keep and store drinking water.
- Buy plywood or other material to protect your home.
- Clear loose and clogged rain gutters and downspouts.
- Trim trees and shrubbery.
- Review your insurance policy.
During the Storm
When in a Watch area...
- Listen frequently to radio, TV or NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards for bulletins of a storm’s progress.
- Fuel and service your vehicles.
- Inspect and secure mobile home tie-downs.
- Board up windows in case the storm moves quickly and you have to evacuate.
- Stock up on batteries, food that will keep, first aid supplies, drinking water and medications.
- Store lawn furniture and other loose, light-weight objects, such as garbage cans and garden tools.
- Have cash on hand in case power goes out and ATMs don’t work.
When in a Warning area...
- Closely monitor radio, TV or NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards for official bulletins.
- Follow instructions issued by local officials. Leave immediately if ordered!
- If evacuating, leave as soon as possible. Stay with friends or relatives, at a low-rise inland motel or at a designated public shelter outside the flood zone.
- DO NOT stay in a mobile or manufactured home.
- Notify neighbors and a family member outside of the warned area of your evacuation plans.
- Take pets with you if possible, but remember, most public shelters do not allow pets other than those used by the handicapped. Identify pet-friendly motels along your evacuation route.
If Staying in a Home...
- Turn refrigerator to maximum cold and keep closed.
- Turn off utilities if told to do so by authorities.
- Fill bathtub and large containers with water in case tap water is unavailable. Use water in bathtubs for cleaning and flushing only. Do NOT drink it.
If Winds Become Strong...
- Stay away from windows and doors, even if they are covered. Take refuge in a small interior room, closet or hallway.
- Close all interior doors. Secure and brace external doors.
- If you are in a two story house, go to an interior 1st floor room.
- If you are in a multi-story building and away from water, go to the 1st or 2nd floor and stay in the halls or other interior rooms away from windows.
- Lie on the floor under a table or other sturdy object.
Plan to evacuate if you...
- Live in a mobile or manufactured home. They are unsafe in high winds no matter how well fastened to the ground.
- Live on the coastline, an offshore island or near a river or flood plain. In addition to wind, flooding from storm surge waves is a major killer.
- Live in a high-rise. Hurricane winds can knock out electricity to elevators, break windows and more.
What to Bring to A Shelter
- Games, books, music players with headphones
- Battery-powered radio and cell phone
- A blanket or sleeping bag for each person
- Copies of key papers such as insurance policies
REMINDER: If you are told to leave, do so immediately!