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  • 7 Steps Toward Hurricane Preparedness

    Be ready for hurricane season

    Eastern Pacific hurricane season begins on May 15 and the Atlantic and Central Pacific seasons begin on June 1. Although it may feel like there is not much you can control, there are actions you can take to prepare for a hurricane disaster. Follow these 7 steps and download the Hurricane Preparedness Infographic, to save and share with your friends.

    Find out what types of wind and water hazards happen near your home, then start preparing how to handle them. Hurricanes are not just a coastal problem. Their impacts can be felt hundreds of miles inland, and significant impacts can occur without it being a major hurricane.

    The first thing you need to do is find out if you live in a hurricane evacuation zone.  If you do, now is the time to begin planning where you would go and how you would get there. You do not need to travel hundreds of miles but have multiple options. Your destination could be a friend or relative who doesn’t live in an evacuation zone.  If you live in a well-built home outside the evacuation zone, your safest place may be to remain home.  Be sure to account for your pets in your plan.  As hurricane season approaches, listen to local officials on questions related to how you may need to adjust any evacuation plans based on the latest health and safety guidelines from the CDC and your local officials.

    You’re going to need supplies not just to get through the storm but for the potentially lengthy and unpleasant aftermath. Have enough non-perishable food, water and medicine to last each person in your family a minimum of three days. Electricity and water could be out for at least that long. You’ll need extra cash, a battery-powered radio and flashlights. You may need a portable crank or solar-powered USB charger for your cell phones. The CDC recommends if you need to go to a public shelter, bring at least two face coverings for each person and, if possible, hand sanitizer. (Children under two years old and people having trouble breathing should not wear face coverings).

    Call your insurance company or agent and ask for an insurance check-up to make sure you have enough homeowners insurance to repair or even replace your home. Don’t forget coverage for your car or boat. Remember, standard homeowners insurance doesn’t cover flooding. Whether you’re a homeowner or renter, you’ll need a separate policy for it, and it’s available through your company, agent or the National Flood Insurance Program at floodsmart.gov. Act now as flood insurance requires a 30-day waiting period.

    If you plan to ride out the storm in your home, make sure it is in good repair and up to local hurricane building code specifications. Many retrofits are not as costly or time consuming as you may think. Have the proper plywood, steel or aluminum panels to board up the windows and doors. Remember, the garage door is the most vulnerable part of the home, so it must be able to withstand the winds.

    Many Americans rely on their neighbors after a disaster, but there are also many ways you can help your neighbors before a hurricane approaches. Learn about all the different actions you and your neighbors can take to prepare and recover from the hazards associated with hurricanes. Start the conversation now with these Neighbor Helping Neighbor strategies but remember you may need to adjust your preparedness plans based on the latest health and safety guidelines from the CDC and your local officials.

    The time to prepare for a hurricane is before the season begins when you have the time and are not under pressure. If you wait until a hurricane is on your doorstep, the odds are that you will be under duress and will make the wrong decisions. Take the time now to write down your hurricane plan. Know who issues evacuation orders for your area, determine locations on where you will ride out the storm, and start to get your supplies now.  Being prepared before a hurricane threatens makes you resilient to the hurricane impacts of wind and water. It will mean the difference between being a hurricane victim or a hurricane survivor.

     

  • National Hurricane Preparedness Week May 3-9


    With the Atlantic and Central Pacific hurricane seasons starting June 1 and the Eastern Pacific hurricane season starting May 15, now is the time to prepare! Get started now by reviewing and sharing Hurricane Safety Tips and Resources.

    To be ready for hurricane season you can determine your personal hurricane risk, find out if you live in a hurricane evacuation zone, and review/update insurance policies. You can also make a list of items to replenish hurricane emergency supplies and start thinking about how you will prepare your home for the coming hurricane season. If you live in hurricane-prone areas, you are encouraged to complete these simple preparations before the hurricane season begins on June 1. Keep in mind, you may need to adjust any preparedness actions based on the latest health and safety guidelines from the CDC and your local officials

    Don't think that you won't be impacted by hurricanes just because you are many miles from the coastline. If you are reading this post, no matter where you are, click here and communicate what you learned to help friends, family, and coworkers prepare for hurricane season and access disaster & preparedness items before it's too late.

  • Sneaky Winter Hazards Safety Tips - #WeatherReady

    The Winter season brings many weather events that can "sneak" up on you.

    These are weather hazards that cause big impacts and make travel difficult without making big news. See our safety tips below to keep yourself safe. Please share the post with your family and friends. You may download and share by clicking the download link under each infographic. You must also see our Severe Weather & Winter Safety products!

    First Snow

    While lots of snow in the middle of winter can certainly cause dangerous travel conditions, many times it’s the first little bit of snow of the season that can cause accidents. Be extra careful as you and other drivers adjust to driving in poor conditions. Slow down, don’t use cruise control, and keep your distance from other vehicles. Don’t let the first snow sneak up on you!

    Sneaky Winter Hazards: First snow.

    Dense Fog

    Visibility can change quickly in fog, creating hazardous driving conditions. Slow down, use your low-beam headlights, and leave plenty of distance between you and other vehicles. Don’t let fog sneak up on you!

    Sneaky Winter Hazards: Dense fog.

    Sun Glare

    Even on a nice winter day, the low sun angle can make driving hazardous. Freshly fallen snow can add more glare to your drive. Have a pair of sunglasses on hand, slow down, and leave plenty of distance between you and other vehicles. Don’t let sun glare sneak up on you!

    Sneaky Winter Hazards: Sun glare.

    Rain with a Temperature Near Freezing

    Rain may seem like less of a winter driving hazard than snow, but when temperatures are near freezing, that’s not the case. Ice can form quickly and make roads slick. In these conditions, slow down, don’t use cruise control, and keep plenty of distance between you and other vehicles. Don’t let this winter hazard sneak up on you!

    Sneaky Winter Hazards: Rain with a temperature near freezing

    Snow Squalls

    Snow squalls are short, intense bursts of snow and wind that can catch people off-guard. They can reduce visibility and cause dangerous travel conditions. If possible, avoid or delay travel until the squall passes. If you’re caught in one, slow down, turn on your headlights and hazard lights, and try to exit the road. Don’t let snow squalls sneak up on you!

    Sneaky Winter Hazards: Snow squalls

    Freezing Drizzle

    When surface temperatures are below freezing, drizzle will form a thin layer of ice on the roads. This difficult-to-see ice can cause very dangerous travel conditions. When it’s drizzling in the winter, slow down, don’t use cruise control, and keep your distance from other vehicles. Don’t let freezing drizzle sneak up on you!

    Sneaky Winter Hazards: Freezing drizzle

    Flash Freeze

    Even when it’s not precipitating, wet roads can quickly turn icy as temperatures dip below freezing. These unexpected slippery conditions can make driving hazardous. When roads look wet in the winter, stay cautious, slow down, and don’t use cruise control. Don’t let flash freezes sneak up on you!

    Sneaky Winter Hazards: Flash freeze

    Rain After a Long Dry Stretch

    You wouldn’t think a little bit of rain could make the roads slippery, but after a long dry stretch, it can happen. This is because oil and debris accumulate on the road during the dry period. Once the rain starts falling, roads become slick. Slow down in these situations. This is one of those hazards that can sneak up on you!

    Sneaky Winter Hazards: Rain after a long dry stretch.

  • Hurricane & Other Preparedness

    Are You Ready?!

    It is easy to say "I am going to prepare". We all plan to be prepared. Disasters have a way of happening before we are actually prepared. Here are some free and inexpensive ways to jump start your preparedness today.

    Fast & Easy Ways to Prepare.

    Get started now! Share these great infographics with everyone you know. If you are generous, stock up on some inexpensive ponchos and emergency blankets to share with everyone in your workplace, family, or group. From under a buck!

    See our recommended Survival & Emergency Gear Products below, or visit our Disaster Survival page.

    Learn More... FREE!

  • Hurricane Alley Emergency Alert

    The latest expert predictions have been updated...

    ...and now call for up to 9 Hurricanes to hit the USA this 2019 Hurricane season!

    According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Climate Prediction Center the likelihood of an above-normal Atlantic hurricane season has increased... and we are at the very beginning of this upcoming hurricane season. ARE YOU READY? You should have ample supplies at home and in your vehicles, at work, school, etc. Build your own kits or buy appropriate survival kits before the rush.

    August 8, 2019 NOAA forecasters monitoring oceanic and atmospheric patterns say conditions are now more favorable for above-normal hurricane activity since El Nino has now ended. Two named storms have formed so far this year and the peak months of the hurricane season, August through October, are now underway.

    Learn more with these helpful articles:

    Start now with these easy items to have on hand:

    Ready to go Kits & Supplies:

  • WRN severe weather and flooding

    WRN Ambassadors-

    As severe weather and flooding continue to impact much of the central U.S., we encourage all ambassadors to proactively engage your employees, stakeholders, and social network on how to be "Weather-Ready" for near-term threats and those on the horizon.

    (1) National Hurricane Preparedness Week (May 5-11, 2019)

    As part of National Hurricane Preparedness Week, the hurricane hunter aircraft are visiting five communities along the east coast. Learn more here!

    Did you know?

    • Over half of the water-related fatalities during the 2016-18 hurricane seasons were vehicle-related.
    • All five storm surge fatalities in Hurricane Michael last year were over the age of 60 years. Have a plan to assist the elderly and others most vulnerable.
    • Dangers exist even as the storm passes and skies clear - downed power lines, carbon monoxide from generators, and health complications from the cleanup.
    • Category 1 hurricanes since 2010 have caused 175 direct deaths and over $100 billion in damage in the U.S. Significant impacts aren't just caused by major hurricanes.

    (2) Flooding Threat Continues across Central U.S.

    • As the saying goes, "if it can rain, it can flood." Help your community as a WRN Ambassador prepare, respond, and recover from flooding events by taking advantage of our flood safety content and staying aware of the latest conditions on weather.gov and information from our Weather Enterprise partners.
    • Follow local weather forecast offices on social media. Learn how here.

    (3) Discover Other Awareness Weeks in Your Area

    • Some states have hurricane awareness weeks planned for June and July
    • Guam/Northern Marianas have "Typhoon Awareness Week" May 13-17
    • Other hazards, such as lightning, wildfires, rip currents, safe boating, and cold water (i.e., hypothermia due to river, lake, or ocean cold water) have state awareness weeks as well. Find safety content for all of these hazards here.

    (4) WRN Aviation Ambassador Webpage 

    Does your organization have aviation interests? Learn more about aviation weather services and opportunities to collaborate.

    (5) Other WRN opportunities...

    National Safe Boating Week (May 18-24)
    Summer Safety Campaign (June 1)

  • Leaves Turning, Throats Burning + Don't forget Nose & Toes

    Here we are in Autumn and heading toward Winter!

    Colder weather brings needs that are far different from warmer times… from avoiding the “kennel cough” rampaging around work or school, to treating the sniffles – even special concerns with driving on cold, wet roads or staying cozy at Fall outdoor events. Remember, too, that Autumn weather brings dry lips and itchy eyes, and holidays bring burns from cooking, campfires, and indoor warming devices. We would like to share our Team’s top recommendations for a healthy and safe season:

    Cold, Cough, Allergy
    & Sinus Relief

    Hand Sanitizer
    Gels & Towelettes

    Disinfectants
    & Deodorizers

    Eye Drops

    Lip Ointment / Lip Balm

    Automobile & Roadside Emergency

    Emergency Heat & Warmth

    Burn Relief Gels & Creams

  • Prepare for Floods Now

    Floods are the Most Common Natural Disaster in the United States

    Failing to evacuate flooded areas, entering flood waters, or remaining after a flood has passed can result in injury or death. Flooding is a temporary overflow of water onto land that is normally dry.

    • Floods may result from rain, snow, coastal storms, storm surges, and overflows of dams and other water systems.
    • Floods may develop slowly or quickly – Flash floods can come with no warning.
    • Floods may cause outages, disrupt transportation, damage buildings, and create landslides.

    IF YOU ARE UNDER A FLOOD WARNING, FIND SAFE SHELTER RIGHT AWAY

    • Do not walk, swim, or drive through flood waters. Turn Around, Don’t Drown!
    • Just six inches of moving water can knock you down, and one foot of moving water can sweep your vehicle away.
    • Stay off of bridges over fast-moving water.
    • Determine how best to protect yourself based on the type of flooding.
    • Evacuate if told to do so.
    • Move to higher ground or a higher floor.
    • Stay where you are.

    How to Stay Safe When a Flood Threatens

    Prepare NOW

    • Know types of flood risk in your area. Visit FEMA’s Flood Map Service Center for information.
    • Sign up for your community’s warning system. The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts.
    • If flash flooding is a risk in your location, then monitor potential signs, such as heavy rain.
    • Learn and practice evacuation routes, shelter plans, and flash flood response.
    • Gather supplies in case you have to leave immediately, or if services are cut off. Keep in mind each person’s specific needs, including medication. Don’t forget the needs of pets. Obtain extra batteries and charging devices for phones and other critical equipment.
    • Purchase or renew a flood insurance policy. It typically takes up to 30 days for a policy to go into effect and can protect the life you've built. Homeowner’s policies do not cover flooding. Get flood coverage under the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP)
    • Keep important documents in a waterproof container. Create password-protected digital copies.
    • Protect your property. Move valuables to higher levels. Declutter drains and gutters. Install check valves. Consider a sump pump with a battery.

    Survive DURING a Flood

    • Depending on where you are, and the impact and the warning time of flooding, go to the safe location that you previously identified.
    • If told to evacuate, do so immediately. Never drive around barricades. Local responders use them to safely direct traffic out of flooded areas.
    • Listen to EAS, NOAA Weather Radio, or local alerting systems for current emergency information and instructions.
    • Do not walk, swim, or drive through flood waters. Turn Around. Don’t Drown!
    • Stay off bridges over fast-moving water. Fast-moving water can wash bridges away without warning.
    • If your vehicle is trapped in rapidly moving water, then stay inside. If water is rising inside the vehicle, then seek refuge on the roof.
    • If trapped in a building, then go to its highest level. Do not climb into a closed attic. You may become trapped by rising floodwater. Go on the roof only if necessary. Once there, signal for help.

    Be Safe AFTER a Flood

    • Listen to authorities for information and instructions. Return home only when authorities say it is safe.
    • Avoid driving, except in emergencies.
    • Snakes and other animals may be in your house. Wear heavy gloves and boots during clean up.
    • Be aware of the risk of electrocution. Do not touch electrical equipment if it is wet or if you are standing in water. If it is safe to do so, turn off the electricity to prevent electric shock.
    • Avoid wading in floodwater, which can contain dangerous debris and be contaminated. Underground or downed power lines can also electrically charge the water.
    • Use a generator or other gasoline-powered machinery ONLY outdoors and away from windows.

    READ MORE
    Keep Your Valuables Safe from Floods and Fires
    Hurricanes mean Flooding
    Prepare for More Hurricanes Now

  • Prepare for More Hurricanes Now

    The Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 to November 30. The Pacific hurricane season runs May 15 to November 30.

    Hurricanes are massive storm systems that form over warm ocean waters and move toward land. Potential threats from hurricanes include powerful winds, heavy rainfall, storm surges, coastal and inland flooding, rip currents, tornadoes, and landslides.
    • Hurricanes can happen along any U.S. coast or in any territory in the Atlantic or Pacific oceans.
    • Hurricanes can affect areas more than 100 miles inland.
    • Hurricanes are most active in September.

    If you are Under a Hurricane Warning, Find Safet Shelter Right Away

    • Determine how best to protect yourself from high winds and flooding.
    • Evacuate if told to do so.
    • Take refuge in a designated storm shelter, or an interior room for high winds.
    • Listen for emergency information and alerts.
    • Only use generators outdoors and away from windows.
    • Turn Around, Don’t Drown! Do not walk, swim, or drive through flood waters.

    Prepare for Hurricanes NOW

    • Know your area’s risk of hurricanes.
    • Sign up for your community’s warning system. The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts.
    • If you are at risk for flash flooding, watch for warning signs such as heavy rain.
    • Practice going to a safe shelter for high winds, such as a FEMA safe room or ICC 500 storm shelter. The next best protection is a small, interior, windowless room in a sturdy building on the lowest level that is not subject to flooding.
    • Based on your location and community plans, make your own plans for evacuation or sheltering in place.
    • Become familiar with your evacuation zone, the evacuation route, and shelter locations.
    • Gather needed supplies for at least three days. Keep in mind each person’s specific needs, including medication. Don’t forget the needs of pets.
    • Keep important documents in a safe place or create password-protected digital copies.
    • Protect your property. Declutter drains and gutters. Install check valves in plumbing to prevent backups. Consider hurricane shutters. Review insurance policies.

    When a hurricane is 18-36 hours from arriving

    • Bookmark your city or county website for quick access to storm updates and emergency instructions.
    • Bring loose, lightweight objects inside that could become projectiles in high winds (e.g., patio furniture, garbage cans); anchor objects that would be unsafe to bring inside (e.g., propane tanks); and trim or remove trees close enough to fall on the building.
    • 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” exterior grade or marine plywood, cut to fit and ready to install.

    When a hurricane is 6 hours from arriving

    • If you’re not in an area that is recommended for evacuation, plan to stay at home or where you are and let friends and family know where you are.
    • Close storm shutters, and stay away from windows. Flying glass from broken windows could injure you.
    • Turn your refrigerator or freezer to the coldest setting and open only when necessary. If you lose power, food will last longer. Keep a thermometer in the refrigerator to be able to check the food temperature when the power is restored.
    • Turn on your TV/radio, or check your city/county website every 30 minutes in order to get the latest weather updates and emergency instructions.

    Survive DURING a Hurricane

    • If told to evacuate, do so immediately. Do not drive around barricades.
    • If sheltering during high winds, go to a FEMA safe room, ICC 500 storm shelter, or a small, interior, windowless room or hallway on the lowest floor that is not subject to flooding.
    • If trapped in a building by flooding, go to the highest level of the building. Do not climb into a closed attic. You may become trapped by rising flood water.
    • Listen for current emergency information and instructions.
    • Use a generator or other gasoline-powered machinery outdoors ONLY and away from windows.
    • Do not walk, swim, or drive through flood waters. Turn Around. Don’t Drown! Just six inches of fast-moving water can knock you down, and one foot of moving water can sweep your vehicle away.
    • Stay off of bridges over fast-moving water.

    Be Safe AFTER a Hurricane

    • Listen to authorities for information and special instructions.
    • Be careful during clean-up. Wear protective clothing and work with someone else.
    • Do not touch electrical equipment if it is wet or if you are standing in water. If it is safe to do so, turn off electricity at the main breaker or fuse box to prevent electric shock.
    • Avoid wading in flood water, which can contain dangerous debris. Underground or downed power lines can also electrically charge the water.
    • Save phone calls for emergencies. Phone systems are often down or busy after a disaster. Use text messages or social media to communicate with family and friends.
    • Document any property damage with photographs. Contact your insurance company for assistance.

    READ MORE
    Hurricane & Other Preparedness
    FEMA Prepares for Hurricanes and so are we!
    It’s Time to Prepare for Hurricane Season

  • Stay Alert: Nationwide Emergency Test on October 3


    Be Aware of the Nationwide Emergency Test

    UPDATE: Due to the response of Hurricane Florence, the nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) and Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) has been postponed until October 3rd.

    On Wednesday, October 3, 2018, the Federal Emergency and Management Agency (FEMA) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will conduct a nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) and Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) beginning at 2:18 p.m. ET. The test will assess how ready the distribution channels are in case a national message needs sending and determine whether improvements are needed.

    READ MORE

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