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What To Do During a Hurricane Watch
- Continue listening regularly to a NOAA Weather Radio or local
radio or television stations for updated information. Hurricanes
can change direction, intensity, and speed very suddenly. What
was a minor threat several hours ago can quickly escalate to a
- Listen to the advice of local officials, and evacuate if they
tell you to do so. Avoid flooded roads and watch for washed-out
bridges. Leaving an area that may be affected will help keep your
family safe. Local officials may call for evacuation in specific
areas at greatest risk in your community. Following the advice
of local authorities is your safest protection. Local officials
may close down certain roads, especially near the coast, when the
outer effects of increasing wind and rain from a hurricane reach
- Prepare your property for high winds. Hurricane winds can blow
large, heavy objects and send them crashing into homes. Anything
not secured may become a deadly or damaging projectile.
- Bring lawn furniture inside, as well as outdoor decorations
or ornaments, trash cans, hanging plants, or anything else that
can be picked up by the wind.
- Make trees more wind resistant by removing diseased and damaged
limbs, then strategically remove branches so that wind can blow
- Secure building by closing and boarding up each window of your
home. Remove outside antennas.
- Moor boat securely or move it to a designated safe place. Use
rope or chain to secure boat to trailer. Use tie-downs to anchor
trailer to the ground or house.
- Fill your car's gas tank. If advised to evacuate, you may have
to travel long distances or be caught in traffic, idling for long
periods of time. Gas stations along the route may be closed.
- Stock up on prescription medications. Stores and pharmacies
may be closed after the storm.
- Recheck manufactured home tie-downs. Manufactured homes may
not be as affected by strong winds if they are tied down according
to the manufacturer's instructions. Properly tied down homes are
more likely to stay fixed to their foundations.
- Check your Disaster Supplies Kit. <Click here> Some
supplies may need to be replaced or restocked.
- Turn refrigerator and freezer to coldest setting. Open only
when absolutely necessary and close quickly. Keeping the coldest
air in will help perishables last much longer in the event of a
- Store valuables and personal papers in a safety deposit box
in a waterproof container on the highest level of your home. Hurricanes
leave much water damage inside homes. Historically, it is shown
that protecting valuables in this manner will provide the best
- Turn off utilities if told to do so by authorities. Authorities
may ask you to turn off water or electric utilities to prevent
damage to your home or within the community. Most of the time they
will tell you to leave the gas on because a professional is required
to turn your gas back on, and it may be several weeks before you
- Turn off propane tanks. Propane tanks may be damaged or dislodged
by strong winds or water. Turning them off reduces the fire potential
if they are damaged by the storm.
- Unplug small appliances. Small appliances may be affected by
electrical power surges that may occur as the storm approaches.
Unplugging them reduces potential damage.
- Review evacuation plan. Make sure your planned route is the
same as the currently recommended route. Sometimes roads may be
closed or blocked, requiring a different route.
- Stay away from flood waters. If you come upon a flooded road,
turn around and go another way. When you are caught on a flooded
road and waters are rising rapidly around you, if you can do so
safely, get out of your vehicle and climb to higher ground. Most
hurricane-related deaths are caused by floods, and most flood fatalities
are caused by people attempting to drive through water. The depth
of water is not always obvious. The roadbed may be washed out under
the water, and you could be stranded or trapped. Rapidly rising
water may stall the engine, engulf the vehicle and its occupants,
and sweep them away. Two feet of water will carry away most automobiles.
National Disaster Education Coalition:
American Red Cross http:www.redcross.org
USDA CSREES www.csrees.usda.gov
The Disaster Center disastercenter.com
5295 Hollister, Houston, Texas 77040 - Phone 713.932.1122 - www.fsresidential.com
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