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May 30, 2012

Hurricane Season Officially Begins June 1 – Are You Prepared?

by PBUnitedWay

The official start of the Atlantic hurricane season is Friday, June 1 – but with two named storms forming before the season it is imperative to make sure you and your family are prepared.

Follow the guidelines below to make sure you are ready for this year’s hurricane season. 

  • To begin preparing, you should build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
  • Know your surroundings.
  • Learn the elevation level of your property and whether the land is flood-prone. This will help you know how your property will be affected when storm surge or tidal flooding are forecasted.
  • Identify levees and dams in your area and determine whether they pose a hazard to you.
  • 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 a pet plan.

Make plans to secure your property:

  • Cover all of your home’s windows. Permanent storm shutters offer the best protection for windows. A second option is to board up windows with 5/8” marine plywood, cut to fit and ready to install. Tape does not prevent windows from breaking.
  • Install straps or additional clips to securely fasten your roof to the frame structure. This will reduce roof damage.
  • 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.
  • Reinforce your garage doors; if wind enters a garage it can cause dangerous and expensive structural damage.
  • Plan to bring in all outdoor furniture, decorations, garbage cans and anything else that is not tied down.
  • Determine how and where to secure your boat.
  • Install a generator for emergencies.
  • If in a high-rise building, be prepared to take shelter on or below the 10th floor.
  • Consider building a safe room.

Flood damage is not usually covered by homeowners insurance.  Don’t make any assumptions; be sure to check your policy. 

Other Helpful Resources:

Palm Beach County Hurricane Preparedness 2012

National Hurricane Center

Hurricane Preparedness

Ready.Gov

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