TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – As Tropical Storm Don makes its way to the Texas coast, families living in the anticipated landfall zones should review their hurricane survival checklists and evacuation routes. In the event that this storm affects your area, there are some precautions to better be prepared to protect families, homes and businesses.
“Early preparation before a tropical storm or hurricane hits is essential and it is the best way to protect yourself, loved ones and personal property,” said Lisa Garcia national coordinator for Get Ready, America! The National Hurricane Survival Initiative. “Know the evacuation routes for your area and in an emergency, heed the directions of law enforcement officials regarding road closures.”
When local officials issue an order to evacuate, you should respond immediately and follow these steps:
- Remain calm – take your disaster supply kit.
- Remember as you leave your house to do the following:
- Turn off lights, household gas appliances, heating, air conditioning, and ventilation systems.
- Leave your refrigerator/freezer turned on.
- Lock your home.
- Use the phone only in case of emergency, injury or illness. Keep calls brief.
- Do not listen to rumors. Refer to local radio or television for up-to-date information from public officials during an emergency.
- Use only one vehicle for your family. If you have room, assist any neighbors who might need a ride.
- Tune to Emergency Alerting System radio stations for reports about evacuation routes, conditions, etc. Use those travel routes specified.
- Drive safely and expect heavy traffic. Law enforcement officials along the route will help with traffic.
- If you need a ride, try to go with a neighbor, friend or relative.
- Let others know when you leave and where you are going.
- Make arrangements for pets. Animals are generally not permitted in public shelters. Although this is changing, you cannot assume your pet is welcome at all shelters. Pet carriers are recommended along with adequate pet supplies.
Remember to stay updated with the latest weather reports provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association. For additional information and checklists, be sure to visit www.hurricanesafety.org.
“Get Ready, America!” – The National Hurricane Survival Initiative – now in it’s 16th year, is the nation’s most comprehensive disaster preparedness public education initiative developed in partnership with the National Emergency Management Association, The Salvation Army and the International Hurricane Research Center at Florida International University, with technical assistance from the National Hurricane Center and FEMA.
Contact: Erica Villanueva, 850-222-1996