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Getting Your Family Through A Hurricane How to Prepare for a Hurricane How to Survive a Hurricane
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Tips for Surviving Hurricanes What Is A Hurricane?

Keys to Surviving Hurricanes

The key to survival in a hurricane disaster is to know about the timing, and characteristics of these dangerous storms.

A hurricane is a tropical storm with sustained winds of seventy-four miles per hour or more. There is an eye at the center of a circular pattern that rotates, measuring four hundred miles in breadth. Hurricanes have a "season". In the Atlantic Ocean, this begins on June 1st, and ends on November 30, annually.

Hurricanes are characterized by torrential rains, high winds and storm surges. A hurricane will draw its energy over a warm ocean, persists for two or more weeks, and can travel along a varying path. Those at risk from a hurricane live along the east coast, and inland, of the North American continent.

Recipe for a Hurricane:

  • A low-pressure system
  • Warm temperatures over the ocean
  • A moist environment, complete with a lot of rain
  • Tropical, equatorial wind patterns
Dangers of a Hurricane:
The Primary Hazards of a Hurricane are: Storm Surge, High sustained winds or powerful gusts, airborne and floating debris, tornadoes, and flooding from heavy rain.

Sustained winds of seventy-four to one hundred-sixty mile per hour can extend inland after a hurricane makes landfall.

Hurricanes are known to spawn tornadoes, adding to the disaster. Torrential rains cause flash floods, causing additional damage. Streams and rivers can go into flood, causing loss of life and property.

A storm surge is a "dome" of ocean water. This is up to twenty feet high at its peak, and approximately fifty to one hundred miles wide. As a storm surge comes ashore, coastal communities are devastated with loss of property, and life.

Preparing for a Hurricane:

A hurricane warning means that your residence or business is inside a hurricane's track. Protect your best interests and board up windows, bringing in, or securing outside items that may become airborne, and prepared to evacuate when officials advise.

Getting Your Family Through A Hurricane How to Prepare for a Hurricane How to Survive a Hurricane
Getting Your Family Through A Hurricane
getting your family through a hurricane

If you live on the Atlantic or Gulf Coast of the United States, you will be within the range of hurricanes.  Officially, the hurricane season lasts from June 1 until November 30, but most hurricanes will occur during August and September, when air and water temperatures are highest.  Many homes have been built right on the beach in these areas to take advantage of recreational and leisure activities.  However, convenient as these homes may be to water sports, they are also the most vulnerable should a hurricane make landfall.  These buildings are often no more than a foot or so above sea level, so it is easy to understand why they will be damaged quite easily by a hurricane, even one that merely ‘breezes’ by and never comes onto the shore.

Evacuation

For people living only inches above sea level, the only option is really to evacuate, your home will definitely be flooded and possibly destroyed by high water or a storm surge.  Although people are often reluctant to leave home, even in the face of a major hurricane because they fear their home will be looted, it is much better to come back to an empty house, than not to come back at all.

Hopefully, you will have prepared some emergency kits to take with you to assure you and your family of as much comfort as possible during an evacuation.  Be sure to have some extra money stashed in one of your kits, too, as you may not be able to access ATMs for some time.

If You Are Able To Stay

Many people are able to stay in their homes during a hurricane as they are either far enough from shore or at a high enough elevation to permit this.  You should be away, however, that basic services will probably be interrupted for the duration of the storm at least.  In all probability, you will not have lights, which means that you will not only have to have provided some sort of lighting, but emergency water.  If you have a quality counter top filter, you will be able to put anything but sea water through it to provide safe, clean water for everyone, otherwise, you will have to depend upon your stored water supply.

You should also have enough emergency food on hand to last you for a week, and the longer the better.  Some means of cooking on an emergency basis should also be available, and there are quite a few inexpensive camp stoves that can be used for this.  Make sure you have enough fuel on hand for your stove.

It is easy for minor injuries to occur during a hurricane, as it is at any other time, but having a first aid kit on hand will make it much easier for you to take care of any small wounds. 

Keep An Eye On Everyone

Do not let anyone wander around outside the house during the hurricane; it is all too easy for people to be harmed by flying debris or falling branches or trees.  Some people like to gawk at the waves coming in, but this is only an excellent way for a large wave to pick them up and carry them off.  You should also keep all pets safely inside during the storm, and afterwards all pets should be on a leash when taken outside.

How to Prepare for a Hurricane

Hurricanes and tropical storms are strong weather patterns capable of intense, sustained winds, high coastal waves and significant rain. In 2005, deadly Hurricane Katrina struck with a mighty vengeance, killing more than 1,200 and leaving $75 billion in damages in her wake. Recovery for the areas hit hardest, Louisiana, Mississippi and Southern Alabama, is still in progress.

With more than 33 tornadoes spawned by the storm and winds that reached speeds over 100 mph, Katrina was one of the most destructive hurricanes to strike the United States in history. Flooding was widespread and prolonged, accounting for displacing millions of residents.

While meteorologists can track the path of developing hurricanes, it’s often difficult to predict the strength when these storms hit land, or precisely where they’ll strike the hardest. But those who reside in coastal areas can do much to prepare in advance before weather conditions generate the next deadly hurricane.

Since hurricane season is generally from June to November, (with a peak period from August to October) planning should begin prior to these months. Remember, however, Mother Nature offers surprises us frequently. Hurricanes and tropical storms do occur outside the anticipated season from time to time.

With potential wind, storm surge waves and standing water damage, hurricanes offer many challenges in preparation. Additionally, long periods without utilities and critical supplies disruption are not uncommon after-effects of hurricanes.


Pre-Planning for a Hurricane:

Property Concerns:

  1. Roofing and Roof to Top of Wall Connection- Seek the advice of a qualified professional who can determine if these areas offer adequate support or need to be retrofitted and braced. In particular, shingles and gabled end walls, take a huge beating during sustained and strong hurricane force wind. Depending on your handyman abilities, some projects may be done by knowledgeable homeowners. For an excellent step-by-step article visit the Institute for Business & Home Safety.
  2. Shutters: Impact resistant shutters should be installed, and properly fastened. Check these between peak hurricane seasons or after any storm. Be sure they are installed correctly and have suffered no damages. Some are permanent and pre-installed in homes. Test the strength by gently leaning on them and observing their yield capacity. Shutters that will better withstand hurricane effects won’t bend against glass when struck by debris. Other options, install impact resistant glass, which is designed to be shatter-resistant.
  3. Entry Doors: Make certain doors are secured properly by installing header and foot bolts. Deadbolt locks and hinges should be checked.
  4. Garage Doors: Wind striking these large areas makes them especially vulnerable to damage. Kits are available to retrofit your garage door. If possible, have a professional reinforce and install these, however. If installed improperly, they can present safety hazards.
  5. Timing: Hurricane reinforcing kits and retrofit supplies (such as shutters) are in high demand when approaching storms are in close proximity. Many of these processes take time to secure. Beginning this process early is advisable.
  6. Know the Potential: Each hurricane is unique in how it presents, wind strength and duration vary widely with every storm. However, you should know the potential for your home’s vulnerability to flooding, winds and storm surge.
  7. Have a Plan: Of all the advance hurricane preparedness, making a plan is the most vital.

Consider the following:

  • Know factors that may affect your property. Is your home on a steep coastal slope that may offer some protection to storm surges of 15 feet or more? Is flooding a known risk? Are high winds likely to cause damage due to structural issues?
  • Determine safe areas in your home. Due to the complexity of each hurricane, you’ll need to also have planned evacuation alternatives that are within your community.
  • Establish exit routes and meeting places. Include roads you would take that are less likely to pose hazards (such as highways that take you away from the coast or avoiding low lying flood prone areas).
  • If you have to evacuate, most shelters do not allow pets. Include planning for pet care during an evacuation.
  • Develop contact numbers. Include an out of state contact, in case your family becomes separated. Keep emergency numbers posted throughout your home. Instruct children in 911 situations.
  • If you own a boat, consider how this will be stored or secured.
  • Keep at least 3-7 days of non-perishable food and drinking water on hand at all times. Allow at least one gallon of water per person for each day. Include pet and/or infant supplies if applicable.
  • Create a disaster survival kit. Include flashlights and spare batteries, battery operated radio, blankets, tool kits, a quality first aid kit, prescription medicines and copies of the scripts, non-electric can opener, extra sets of car keys, changes of clothes and toiletries.
  • Make a packet containing important documents such as insurance papers, copies of drivers’ licenses, etc. Keep this in a waterproof container.
  • Have a small amount of cash in small bills on hand at all times. ATM’s during a hurricane are often inoperable for days.
  • Maintain a full tank of fuel in at least one vehicle at all times.
  • Purchase flood insurance and review all other insurance policies. Flood insurance is additional and not typically covered in traditional home owners policies. If you are at flood risk, consider obtaining flood protection.

If you are ordered to evacuate, take your disaster kit with you. It’s possible you may become stuck in traffic for long periods or that shelter areas may not have enough supplies. If a motel is your designated shelter, make reservations well before you depart.


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How to Prepare to Survive a Hurricane

Deluxe Survival Backpack Kit

After the 2005 catastrophic Hurricane Katrina, many unfortunate individuals were left stranded in disease infested flooded waters, surviving on roof tops for days until rescue workers could reach them. Even those who did escape to community shelters often found poor conditions, inadequate sanitation and little resources. The entire country learned much about readiness from the tragedy of Katrina’s aftermath.

Preparedness is a multi-faceted process. Sound planning for crisis situations begins far ahead in anticipation of worst case scenarios. While no planning can take into account all the possibilities, good preparation attempts to encompass as many known factors as allowable. It is also a grass roots process, which begins with each family knowing potential hazards and preparing for them.

If you’ve prepared for a natural disaster, such as a hurricane, you will have a written family plan well ahead of time. The hurricane season (June-November) is typically at its peak from August to October, though strong storms can develop outside the seasonal months.This means you shouldn’t wait until late July to begin hurricane preparations.

First Aid Kit

Prepared for Hurricane Season: If you haven’t already done so, make a written disaster plan for your family and ready your survival kit. Stock up on non-perishable foods and drinking water. Obtain several flashlights, extra batteries, a weather radio and a high quality first aid kit. Take a first aid or CPR class. Examine your home and correct structural issues that might compromise integrity during a strong storm.Determine exit routes, alternative shelter options in case of evacuation. Make plans for pet care during evacuation. Keep dead wood trimmed back from trees near home. Learn surge history of your area. Consider flood plains, locations to rivers or bodies of water and elevation. These will aid you in knowing risks of staying in your home or evacuating.Know where official shelters are in case you can’t make it to your alternative shelter.

Hurricane Watch Issued: Leave low lying areas promptly. Begin securing or removing outside objects, such as lawn furniture or satellite dishes. Shutter windows.Check supplies of food and water. Replenish survival kit, including batteries. Get cash from ATM. Fill auto tank with fuel and get extra fuel for generators.

Move boat to secure area or moor well. Stay abreast of current weather conditions and designated shelters. Turn refrigerator and freezer to the coldest level. Freeze water in plastic containers. Wedge sliding doors. Move photographs, personal items of value, or light electronics, (such as laptops) to safe room.Have car parked where falling debris is not a hazard.

Roll and Go Survival Kit

Hurricane Warning Issued: Listen to weather radio for constant updates. Gather family. Bring in pets. If your home is sturdy and on high ground, away from flood plains, move to designated secure area in your home.

Good choices for hurricane safe zones are those on downwind sides- away from windows. Preferably a well reinforced inner room. Those in a two story house should select first floor shelters. Multiple level buildings usually have safest spots on first or second floors. Choose interior hallways or inside stairwells. Places around elevator shafts (but NOT in an elevator) are often safe because they are reinforced in these spots. Never use an elevator during a hurricane!

Make sure cell phone is charged. Set refrigerator and freezer on maximum cold. Fill containers with additional water. You can use sanitized bathtubs, sinks, pots and pans for this purpose. Do not go outdoors, even during the calm of the hurricane’s eye. Wait until authorities inform you of favorable changes to go outside.

If your home is in danger of breaking up (i.e. the roof becomes compromised) seek shelter under a sturdy piece of furniture.

If ordered to evacuate, do so promptly. Make reservations before you leave if planning on sheltering in a hotel. Travel light, but take your survival kit, important papers, and food and water with you.Try to stick to approved evacuation routes. If you can, evacuate during daylight hours.


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Prepare for a Hurricane Preparing For A Hurricane Preparing For A Hurricane

Prepare for a Hurricane

 

Hurricanes are violent tropical storms and generally happen between the months of June and November, with September the most common month for these storms.  Those who winter in the South (snowbirds) should be aware that hurricanes frequently occur in the Southeast region of the United States and in the Caribbean as well.

 

Quick Facts on Hurricanes
  • A hurricane is a tropical storm in which the winds rotate around a low-pressure storm center, called the eye of the hurricane.
  • The eye of the hurricane varies in size.  In the eye of the hurricane is peaceful, non-violent weather.  If the eye of the hurricane is passing over your area, it will not even seem like a storm is present.
  • Around the eye are the most violent, strong winds of the hurricane.  This is called the “eye wall”.  These winds can reach upwards of 74 mph and can be accompanied by torrential rains.
  • Hurricanes cause more damage than tornadoes as they can be much larger (some can have a diameter of 620 miles!)
  • One of the most destructive parts of a hurricane can be the storm surge that accompanies it, which can lead to severe flooding.  
What To Do During a Hurricane Emergency Survival Kit
  • Often, hurricanes can be predicted one or two days in advance.
  • Most of the time, hurricanes move slowly and will remain in one area for several hours.
  • During hurricane season (Jun-Nov), pay attention to the weather reports and warnings.
  • If a hurricane warning has been issued, follow these safety guidelines during the next storm.
    • If you live near the ocean or in a lowland area, you should try to move more inland or to higher ground.  Offshore winds can create immense waves that can become tidal waves or storm surge when they reach the shore.
    • Be sure to have your emergency kit at the ready and in a portable bag such as a duffel bag or small rolling suitcase.
    • Never watch the storm from the beach or shore.  Most people that are killed by hurricanes are as a result of being swept away by waves, storm surge, or floodwaters.
    • When the eye of the hurricane is passing over you area, there will be a calm period that can last for a few minutes or up to half an hour.  Stay in a safe place and avoid going outdoors.  If there is any urgent damage, try to repair it as quickly as possible.  Remember that the storm will continue to move and you will be hit by the “other side” of the eye wall – with possibly even stronger winds.
    • Listen to emergency reports on a portable radio.
    • If you’re on a farm, it’s better not to enclose your cattle.  During Hurricane Andrew (South Florida, 1992) horses that were left outdoor sustained less injuries than those that had been enclosed.  Some of the structures had been destroyed by the strong winds and the horses had been injured by the debris, something that could have been avoided had they been left outdoors.
  Mobile Homes VS Hurricanes
  • There are special precautions for those who live in a mobile home.
    • Position your mobile home near a natural “windbreaker” like a hill or cluster of trees.
    • Securely fasten the mobile home.  You should consult the manufacturer for the best ways to do so.
    • When the storm approaches, seek coverage in a safer, more sturdy structure.  
    • Remaining in a mobile home during a storm can be more dangerous than being outside. 
  • If you are outside, lay down in a ditch as far away from the mobile home, cars, or any other objects that can be thrown around by the hurricane.

Preparing For A Hurricane

Probably the only good thing about hurricanes is that they never really sneak up on you; there is generally plenty of warning before the storm makes landfall.  It was not always thus, of course, and in earlier times, these dangerous storms must just have fallen on those hapless enough to live where they occur.  Now, due to advances in the science of meteorology, we have plenty of warning before a hurricane strikes.

Do Not Wait Until The Last Minute

All of us are familiar with pictures on television or the internet showing stores that have had their shelves stripped by frantic shoppers just before a hurricane strikes.
Usually, this occurs a day or two before the storm hits.  The odd thing is that most people will have had a week or more of warning about the storm, but do nothing until it is almost too late.  Whether they believe that the hurricane will change direction, or are just exhibiting the human tendency  to put things off for as long as possible, a good many of these late shoppers will wind up disappointed and without adequate supplies to see them through the storm.

Hopefully, You Have Already Prepared

If you have given some thought ahead of time to the possibility of a hurricane causing disruptions, you hopefully will not be one of those people fighting over bottled water at the local convenience store.  Your supply of bottled water should already be in a safe spot in your home, and you should have enough to supply everyone for a week of water, at a minimum.  It would also be wise to have a water filter on hand, in case you use up your bottled water. 

Besides water, you should have emergency food supplies stored in your home as well.  These can be canned food from your grocery or that you have put up yourself, or dehydrated kits.  Both ways are good to make sure that your family will be able to eat until the damage from the hurricane allows a return to normal conditions.

A Few Other Helpful Items

While supplies of food and water will definitely see you through the emergency, you might want to add some things to your emergency supplies to make life a bit more pleasant while you wait for life to return to normal. 
Emergency lighting will certainly be appreciated by the entire family – there is little worse than sitting around in the dark.  You will also want to have an emergency heat source available, since nights can be chilly even in the summer.  It would also be advisable to have several flashlights in the home, too.

Extra blankets, or emergency blankets can help make the emergency more livable, and if you have some sleeping bags on hand, everyone will be more comfortable while they sleep.

Sometimes, it can take days or even weeks before electricity is restored after a hurricane.  The hours can really drag unless you have provided some means by which the family can distract themselves.  A deck or two of cards can go a long way to keeping everyone happy, and if you have a few board games, it will definitely be to the good.

Preparing For A Hurricane
preparing for a hurricane

There is little good about a hurricane, except for the fact that you will always get plenty of warning before it makes landfall.  Thanks to modern meteorology and communications, hurricanes are detected when they just begin, and they can be tracked through satellite radar.  This means that in most cases, you will have plenty of time to get ready before the hurricane reaches you.  It would be inadvisable to wait for the last minute to begin your hurricane preparations, so have everything ready for when the time comes.

Securing Your House

Much of the damage done by a hurricane results from broken windows causing the house to flood.  In order to protect your windows from high winds and objects being hurled about by the storm, you should have some kind of coverings for your windows.  You can buy storm shutters that can remain decorative elements on your home until needed.  More basic metal covers are also available. These will help to keep your windows intact, and spare your home and its contents water damage.

It is also easy to make plywood window protectors for your windows.  These are a low-cost solution that will work every bit as well as shutters.  The plywood protectors will be taken down and stored when there is no storm at hand, but will help to assure that your home will receive a minimum of water damage during the storm.

Before the hurricane hits is a good time to check on your roof and chimney, if you have one.  Broken shingles and a crumbling chimney can become hazards during a hurricane, and both should be fixed as quickly as possible.

Providing For Comfort And Survival

When a hurricane approaches, it is not uncommon for all the food and bottled water in the stores to disappear within a very short time.  This is not the time to begin thinking about emergency supplies, they should already be in a safe, dry spot.  You should have an emergency supply of water that will keep everyone hydrated until conditions have stabilized.  Likewise, you should have enough non-perishable food to see you through at least one week.   If you have pets, you should have extra water and some of their food set aside, too.

A first aid kit should be ready, and you should have extra blankets on hand in case they are needed.  Although it may not be needed in most cases, you should probably also have a tent to use for emergency shelter should your home be rendered uninhabitable. 

In order to get through the emergency caused by the hurricane with as little disruption as possible, you should have emergency lighting on hand as well Candles are always a dependable, if weak, source of light, but liquid fuel lanterns and rechargeable lights are available to give a stronger means to light your home.  If you cook with a gas stove, it will probably be possible to use this during the hurricane, but if you rely upon electricity, it would be a good idea to have an emergency stove on hand to provide for hot cooked meals.

Tips for Surviving Hurricanes What Is A Hurricane?

Tips for Surviving Hurricanes

Deciding what to take into your storm shelter area isn’t difficult. However, missing just one or two vital items can make a huge difference later when 100 mile an hour winds rage outside. Unlike tornadoes which last a few short moments and typically don’t devastate as large of an area, hurricanes have the potential to damage entire regions for a sustained period.

Common items we take for granted on a daily basis become precious commodities in the aftermath of a hurricane. The survivors of 2005 Hurricane Wilma would agree. More than 500 waited in line for cleaning supplies outside a store in Ft. Lauderdale after Wilma struck. Recovery is often a long, arduous process. Packing a sound survival kit is essential, not only for the hurricane’s duration, but also for extended periods till life returns to normal.

Here are some tips on preparing a survival kit that will take you through gale force winds and beyond:


Emergency Food Supplies

  • Water- a 2 week supply for each person. Most experts recommend a gallon of water, per person for each day. That might seem like a lot. But later, in stifling hot temperatures, you’ll be glad for this necessity. Buy water in 5 gallon containers to save on storage space.
  • Non-Perishable Foods- Instant oatmeal, canned meat or fish, crackers, rice cakes, cookies, canned soups, canned vegetables and fruits, canned ravioli or spaghetti, cereals, peanut butter, juices, instant coffee, energy bars, granola, trail mix, instant rice, tea. Any other non-perishable packaged food that needs little preparation or cooking. 7-14 days of supplies are recommended. If space is limited, plan on no less than 3 days of food products for your family.
  • Staples- Little luxuries, like sugar for your instant coffee, will be greatly missed if you don’t remember to include it in your survival kit. Pack sugar, flour, salt, pepper, corn meal, powdered as well as condensed milk.
  • For Babies- Infant formula, disposable bottle liners, extra bottles and nipples. Spare pacifier. At least three weeks of diapers and wipes. Canned baby food and boxed baby cereal. Depending on the age of your child, you can adjust accordingly. At least 2 weeks of items, as these are heavily in demand once stores open.
  • Suggested- Small packages of condiments.

Emergency Supply Essentials

  • Battery-operated radio or weather radio. Plus extra batteries.
  • Flashlights for each person. Plan on using one set of batteries a day. Store at least a 3 day supplies of flashlight batteries.
  • Camping lantern – pick one that runs on an extended battery. Also include matches and candles.
  • Manual can and bottle opener, coffee filters (to strain drinking water), cooking utensils, pots, and pans.
  • Disposable plates, cups and utensils.
  • Sterno cans or camping stove for heating food in your shelter. (Be careful to select a stove that doesn’t produce fumes in enclosed spaces). Small charcoal grill for cooking outdoors when hurricane passes. Extra charcoal.
  • Plain household bleach. DO not substitute products marked “containing bleach”. Bleach has germ killing properties that other cleaners do not. In addition, you can use it to purify drinking water in emergencies.
  • Paper towels, small cooler, large black trash bags, work gloves, zippered quart or gallon bags, rope, a large tarp, duct tape, scissors, utility knife and needle and thread. At least one soft, lightweight backpack or pillowcase in case you have to evacuate.
  • First aid kit. Choose a very high quality kit, as you may be administering first aid to family and neighbors. Pick one with pain relievers, aspirin, eye wash, bandages, cotton, antacids, diarrhea medication, anti-biotic cream, and burn spray. Add a thermometer, mosquito repellent, and medical gloves.
  • Personal care items- toothbrushes, toothpaste, hair brush, soap, shampoo, conditioner, towels, feminine products, toilet and tissue paper. At least one change of clothes for each family member, plus light jackets, closed-toe shoes and socks.
  • Storage containers for water and fuel. You should also have a tool kit, crescent wrench and ax. After Hurricane Katrina, many stranded in flooded areas used an ax to chop through the roof and climb out to safety.

Emergency Supply Tips

  • If additional drinking water is needed, purify by bringing to a rolling boil for 1 minute.
  • Use plain household bleach to purify if heating water is not possible. Add 5 drops bleach to ½ gallon water. For cloudy or very cold water, you’ll need 10 drops per ½ gallon water. Let stand 30 minutes.
  • Store water in a clean, covered container. Strain prior to purifying with coffee filters. While bleach kills most germs, it is not as effective as boiling.
  • Waterproof containers should be used to store food. Date and label containers. Keep items arranged so oldest items are used first. Place staples, cereal, crackers and other dry goods in zippered bags and store in tightly sealed containers.

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What Is A Hurricane?

what is a hurricane

How Do Hurricanes Start?

Hurricanes generally start out as a low pressure system somewhere over the Atlantic Ocean, usually near the equator.  They are most common during the summer months, when the ocean has become warmer.  Although the hurricane season for the Eastern United States is officially runs from June to November, most hurricanes occur during August and September.  The warm air over the ocean pulls up huge quantities of moisture from the heated ocean, and soon the familiar rotation begins.  Until the wind speed reaches 75 miles per hour, the disturbance will only be considered a tropical storm, but once that speed has been reached, the storm is officially a hurricane. 

Why Is A Hurricane So Dangerous?

Hurricanes are dangerous because of several factors.  To begin with, the winds can reach higher than 175 miles per hour, and these winds, combined with the rotational movement, can spawn tornadoes.  Winds of this velocity can knock down power lines, trees, and sometimes buildings.  If a tornado occurs, the potential for damage increases.

Heavy rains accompany a hurricane, and even inland regions can experience flooding as a result of these rains.  Sometimes 6 or more inches of rain can fall within hours, and once the capacity of the ground to absorb water has been reached, the water will begin to run overland.  Erosion can occur anywhere and lower-lying areas can be flooded.  Wells can be contaminated and septic systems can back up, causing more disruption and inconvenience.

Those living on the coast will be in danger of the storm surge that accompanies a hurricane.  This is a wall of water that is driven in front of the main storm.  Storm surges are almost like miniature tidal waves and can be up to 25 feet high.  The weight of the water and strength of the storm will assure that the maximum damage will occur with these waves.  Most of the fatalities associated with hurricanes come from the storm surge.

What You Can Do To Be Ready For A Hurricane

If you live in a coastal area that is subject to destruction by hurricanes, the best thing you can do is to have a viable evacuation plan ready.  You should keep your car’s gas tank topped off at all times, and know exactly what route you will follow if you have to evacuate.  Keep extra road maps in the car and in the house. first aid kit should be kept where it will be easily accessible if you need to leave in a hurry, and prescription medicine, food, and safe water should be handy.Emergency food and water supply for your family is very important to have in times of emergency. Have everyone in the family understand where they should go in case of evacuation, and if you have pets, make sure that you have made provision for them, too.

Living inland can protect you from the worst of the hurricane’s damage, but you may still have to deal with loss of electric power.  A good supply of clean water and food will help you ‘weather’ a hurricane’s disruptions, and be sure to have flashlights and first aid supplies on hand.