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Tropical storms measuring wind speeds exceeding 74 miles per hour are classified differently depending on location. They pose numerous hazards, ranging from wind damage and flooding to power outages and disruptions to supply chains.
Every so often, Mother Nature reminds people about who runs the house. Even though you can’t predict a hurricane’s timing or target, being ready is the most effective strategy for reducing its potential impact.
Getting to Know Hurricanes and Typhoons
Tropical cyclones, hurricanes, or typhoons form across various ocean basins and are characterized by powerful winds and thunderstorms.
In the Northern Hemisphere, these cyclones exhibit a counterclockwise circulation. In the Southern Hemisphere, the tropical storms’ circulation is clockwise.
Coastal areas along the Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico, and parts of the Southwest United States face the impact of hurricanes, often leading to heavy rains, floods, and subsequent damage.
The Atlantic hurricane season spans from June to November, peaking between mid-August and late October, while the Eastern Pacific season runs from May 15 to November 30.
In the Pacific and Indian Oceans, typhoons affect land masses across Asia, the Middle East, and Australia. These intense storms, reaching winds over 155 miles per hour, generate tornadoes, microbursts, and storm surges along coastlines.
A weather tropical storm also causes widespread damage through heavy rainfall, resulting in floods, flying debris, landslides, and flash flooding, especially in mountainous regions.
How to Best Prepare for a Natural Disaster
Stay informed when a significant storm approaches by checking out National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio updates or any local news channels. Additionally, heed all directives issued by authorities regarding evacuation.
Before tropical storms and hurricanes strike, ensure the safety of your home and loved ones by following these tips for hurricane and storm preparation.
Keep an Eye on Weather Reports
Weather reports help people understand necessary home security measures and evacuation timings. Alongside weather updates, staying updated with local public health advisories is crucial.
As a storm nears, you must prepare to safeguard yourself, your family, and your pets. Check your fuel levels, know shelter locations, and have a secure out-of-town destination in mind.
The Red Cross offers a free emergency app on App Store and Google Play. This app sends alerts to affected areas during natural disasters, provides information on local shelters, and aids in monitoring family members’ locations.
Prompt departure during tropical storms is crucial in the event of evacuation orders from local authorities. Given the often sudden nature of evacuations, FEMA’s Ready program highlights the importance of familiarizing yourself with evacuation routes and practicing them with your family.
Prepare Your Home in Advance
When high winds are expected, and you have outdoor spaces like a yard, balcony, or terrace, secure anything that could be carried away.
Items like lawn furniture pose a risk of causing harm or damage, so bringing them indoors, into a garage, or underneath a deck is advised. Additionally, ensuring drains and gutters are clear and installing hurricane shutters are proactive steps to protect your home.
Stock Up on Essentials
Preparing your home after a hurricane or tropical storm forecast is not enough. You also need to prepare three days’ worth of food and water.
Ensure a gallon of water per person per day is available. In addition to food, keep the following essential supplies handy — first-aid kits, flashlights, battery-operated radios, and extra batteries.
It’s crucial to have an adequate supply of medications, especially for chronic conditions, and specialty items for infants and pets. For temperature-sensitive medicines like insulin, a cooler can help maintain their viability.
Furthermore, keeping extra cash on hand is advisable, as major power outages during emergencies might limit ATM access.
Have an Emergency Bag
Keep an emergency kit containing essential supplies for home sheltering to evacuate quickly. This tropical storm preparedness kit should have the following items:
- Battery-powered or hand-crank radio
- First-aid kit
- Local maps
- Manual can opener
- Phone chargers
You should also pack essential documents or have digital copies on a thumb drive, preferably stored on a cloud service like Google Drive.
These papers include identification, mortgage and banking information, medical prescriptions, and insurance policies — all kept in a portable waterproof container.
It’s best to have a year-round preparedness approach. You must have specific tasks for different months — for instance, reviewing your go-bag in January, backing up important documents on a thumb drive in February, and focusing on home reinforcement in March and April.
This hurricanes and tropical storms sequential approach alleviates the overwhelming nature of preparing for emergencies, ensuring tasks are manageable and not rushed.
Plan for Your Pets
Pets hold a profound place in people’s lives. If you have a potential shelter or hotel in mind, it’s wise to call ahead and inquire about their pet accommodation policies. Assign a trusted neighbor or friend who can assist or evacuate your pet if you cannot.
When assembling your pet’s emergency kit, include a three-day supply of pet food and vaccination records, often necessary when lodging with your cat or dog. Additionally, familiar items like beloved toys and bedding can comfort your pet during stressful times.
Be Mentally Prepared
Addressing your mental well-being when gearing up for tropical storms is crucial. Acknowledging the apprehension a storm brings is the first step, often overlooked in discussions.
Once your home and supplies are secure, engaging in mindfulness practices such as meditative breathing, yoga, or moments of stillness is best. Feeling well-prepared for whatever nature unfolds can also alleviate the stress of confronting the unknown.
Taking steps to tend to your mental health amid hurricane preparations is as vital as securing your physical safety.
Be Storm-Ready With United Restoration
Why wait until hurricanes and tropical storms bear down before getting ready? Take some time to chat with us at United Restoration now so you know what to expect and how to prepare. It’ll save you a lot of stress down the road. It’s good to have a plan.
Don’t leave your home’s protection up to chance. Take control by connecting with United Restoration today. Our knowledge and services will have your place ready to weather any storm.
Reach out now so you are aware of the situation later. Be prepared and protected — that’s the name of the game when Mother Nature comes knocking with a tropical storm.