When hurricanes strike land, they can wreak havoc on homes, communities — and sometimes — your vacation plans. Learn more about protecting yourself and your family in the event of a hurricane or tropical storm.
What Is a Hurricane?
A hurricane, also called a tropical cyclone, is a rotating low-pressure system that forms over tropical or subtropical waters. It’s generally accompanied by severe thunderstorms with strong wind speeds. Heavy rains and flooding are also common.
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Preparing for a Hurricane
- Reinforce windows by covering them with plywood
- Secure your outdoor items, like lawn furniture
- Unplug appliances and turn off propane tanks
- Turn off refrigerators
- Find shelter by going to a secure building on high ground
- Head to the grocery store to stock up on several days’-worth of food and water
- Pack a kit with first aid items and other essentials
- If you’re staying home, make sure you have an evacuation plan
Staying Safe During the Storm
- Remain indoors, even if things seem to calm down. Remember, the storm will resume after the “eye” has passed
- Stay in a secure room and avoid windows
Safety After the Hurricane Has Passed
- Avoid standing water, because it might be electrically charged
- Limit your phone calls. Only use your phone for emergency calls
- Do not drive: Debris and water make it dangerous
- If you’re using a generator, only do so when you’re outdoors
- Avoid downed power lines, and report them immediately to authorities
- Do not drink tap water until authorities deem it safe
- Use flashlights instead of candles to limit fire hazards