Hurricane Season Has Arrived: Here’s What to Know in 2019Wise Blog Team
For some in the United States, June 1st brings gleeful anticipation of sunshine and white sand beaches. But for much of the country, June 1st has a different meaning. It marks the arrival of hurricane season.
Atlantic hurricane season lasts from June 1st to November 30th, and the average number of significant storms per year1 from data collected from 1981-2010 is 12.1—and an average of 6.4 of those storms are hurricanes, with 2.7 listed as major hurricanes. And as the 2019 season arrived days ago, Colorado State University researchers2 increased their April prediction of 13 significant storms in 2019 to 14.
While it’s rare that a hurricane will touch down at the beginning of the season, subtropical storm Andrea surfaced on May 20th, kicking things off with a powerful pre-season cyclone. It’s time to prepare for hurricane season now.
Hurricanes bring heavy rainfall, torrential winds, flooding, tornadoes, and more. They can be devastating events with both physical and emotional consequences. Follow along for awareness tips and how to stay prepared during the 2019 Atlantic hurricane season.
Hurricane Data: Who’s at Risk?
Because of a lack of wind shear and warm ocean temperatures, the Atlantic coast tends to see the most activity during the month of September3. But this doesn’t mean a hurricane won’t surface in June. It’s a rare occurrence, but because the Gulf coast is the first area to drop in wind shear and rise in ocean temperatures, it’s here that hurricanes will be more likely in June4 and earlier months.
As the season continues on, millions of homes are at risk in 2019. Property data firm CoreLogic estimates5 that 4.1 million homes on the Atlantic coast and 3.1 million homes on the Gulf coast are at risk, potentially incurring $1 trillion and $668 billion in damage, respectively.
Even if you’re not close to the coast, a powerful hurricane can reach many miles inland. Brace for storms and be ready with hurricane preparedness tips below.
Hurricane Preparedness: Before the Storm
- Emergency Kit: In a watertight and waterproof container, gather flashlights, batteries, necessary medications, first aid supplies, a battery-powered radio, fully-charged power banks and charging cables for cell phones, family and pet photos, and a minimum of 3 days non-perishable food and water.
- Store important items: In a separate watertight container, store insurance policies, important financial documents, social security cards, car titles, extra prescriptions, and any other relevant documents.
- Review your insurance coverage and call your company to make plan upgrades or changes if necessary.
- Back up computer files to the cloud.
- Remove interior fan blades and secure loose light fixtures, and remove unsecured decorative items from the exterior of your home.
- Familiarize yourself with evacuation routes and shelter locations. If you anticipate evacuating, leave as early as possible.
- Shutter windows.
- Pet owners: It’s best to have your pet microchipped in case you’re separated. Make sure your pet is wearing a collar with updated contact information, and add a minimum of three days of food, water, and medications for your pet in your emergency kit. Furthermore, research shelters that will allow pets.
Hurricane Preparedness: 24 Hours Before the Storm
- Unplug appliances, turn off the hot water heater, and turn the television off.
- Close and lock interior doors and windows.
- Charge electronic devices and inform friends and family of your location and evacuation plan.
- Set air conditioning to cold and turn freezer and refrigerator to coldest settings.
- Place passport and all credit cards, debit cards, and identification cards in a Ziploc bag and keep them in your pocket throughout the storm.
Hurricane Preparedness: During the Storm
- In the case of high winds, go to a FEMA safe room, storm shelter, or a windowless room or hallway on the first floor that isn’t in danger of flooding.
- If your building becomes flooded, go to the highest level of the building with an exit route. Do not go into an attic with no windows.
- Do not walk, drive, or swim through flood waters. Even water surges of one foot are powerful enough to sweep a car away.
Hurricane Preparedness: After the Storm
- Document any damage with photos and contact your insurance company.
- Take great care during cleanup and wear protective clothing. Don’t touch electrical equipment if you’re standing in or near water, and don’t enter flood water, which can contain harmful debris and downed power lines.
- Keep abreast of alerts and notifications from authorities and utility companies.
Stay prepared and worry less—let Wise Quality Prepared Foods take care of your survival food and first aid supplies.