There are many benefits to living in the greater Houston area, like the lively nightlife, the many restaurants, and being only 30 minutes from the beach.  Consequently, with the joy of the coast also comes the serious threat of hurricanes.  We all experienced the wrath of Ike and suffered a great deal of damage.  Thanks to the Red Cross, here is a list of things to be aware of during hurricane season that could help avoid a hurricane headache.  

 Watch vs. Warning:

  • Watch: Hurricane conditions are possible
  • Warning: Hurricane conditions are expected

Prepare a Personal Evacuation Plan:

  • Identify ahead of time where you would go in the case of an evacuation.
  • Keep handy telephone numbers and a map of the place.
  • Listen to NOAA Weather radio or local radio stations for evacuation instructions.

Assemble a Disaster Supplies Kit:

  • First aid kit and essential medications
  • Canned food and a can opener
  • At least 3 gallons of water
  • Protective clothing, sleeping bags, and bedding
  • Battery-powered radios, flashlight, and extra batteries
  • Important documents: driver’s licenses, social security cards, wills, deeds, etc.

Prepare you home:

  • Install hurricane shutters or purchase pre-cut plywood for all your windows
  • Make trees wind resistant by removing damaged or dead limbs
  • Bring any lawn furniture, children’s toys, hanging plants, or trash cans
  • Recheck manufactured home tie-downs
  • Fill your car’s gas tank

What to do when a hurricane warning is issued:

  • Listen to the officials, and leave if they advise it
  • If you are not told to evacuate, stay indoors.
  • Be aware of the “eye” of the hurricane, this is only the sign that a hurricane is half over
  • Be cautious of tornadoes which can happen during or after a hurricane.  Stay safe inside a room or bathroom with no windows.
  • Stay away from flood areas; rising waters are usually strong and swift and can easily sweep away you or your car.

What to do after a hurricane:

  • Keep listening to the NOAA Weather station
  • Return home only when instructed to do so
  • Inspect your home for damage

Hopefully, we will not have to put into practice these helpful strategies.  However, if a hurricane does make it’s way back to Houston, then you will know exactly what to do.  Have a great school year!

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