|Corrigan Times - Local News
Copyright 2013 - Polk County Publishing Company
Tips to prepare for hurricane season
CORRIGAN --This week is the fi rst week of hurricane season and there are many things citizens should know about the season. Residents should be alert for watches and warnings about storm activity and once such advisories or issued, pay attention to local news outlets for information about storms threatening the area. Local offi cials may order or recommend evacuation and provide instructions about what people in affected areas should do. Be ready to follow the instructions given by local offi cials. People who live in mobile homes or are concerned about the structural stability of their home should plan to evacuate any time a storm threatens, even if they live some distance from the coast. Even less powerful hurricanes can produce high winds capable of destroying mobile homes. Refer to the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) ready.gov/hurricanes for comprehensive information on hurricane preparedness at home and in your community. Highlights on how to prepare and take action are available below: * Know if you live in an evacuation area. Assess your risks and know your home's vulnerability to storm surge, fl ooding and wind. Understand National Weather Service forecast products and especially the meaning of NWS watches and warnings. * Contact your local National Weather Service offi ce and local government/emergency management offi ce. Find out what type of emergencies could occur and how you should respond. * Keep a list of contact information for reference. * Online hazard and vulnerability assessment tools are available to gather information about your risks. * Everyone needs to be prepared for the unexpected. * Put together a basic disaster supplies kit and consider storage locations for different situations. Help community members do the same. * Develop and document plans for your specifi c risks. * Protect yourself and family with a Family Emergency Plan * Be sure to plan for locations away from home * Business owners and site locations should create Workplace Plans * Make sure schools and day cares have School Emergency Plans * Pet owners should have plans to care for their animals. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offer information on animal health impacts in evacuation shelters. * Prepare your boat and be aware of marine safety if you are on or near the water. * Follow guidelines to guard your community's health and protect the environment during and after the storm. * Review the Centers for Disease Control's (CDC) health considerations before, during, and after a storm. * Remember to follow the U.S. Food & Drug Administration's (FDA) food and water safety guidelines during disasters. * Review the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) suggestions for health and environmental safety in disaster preparedness. Evacuation * Review the FEMA Evacuation Guidelines to allow for enough time to pack and inform friends and family if you need to leave your home. FOLLOW instructions issued by local officials. Leave immediately if ordered! * Consider your protection options to decide whether to stay or evacuate your home if you are not ordered to evacuate. * Wait until an area is declared safe before returning home. Remember that recovering from a disaster is usually a gradual process.