The 2020 Hurricane Season prediction, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), forecasts a strong likelihood of an “above normal” hurricane season, which began on 1 June and continues until 30 November. Predicted, are 13 to 19 named storms (winds 39 mph or higher), of which 6 to 10 could become hurricanes (winds of 74 mph, or higher), including 3 to 6 major hurricanes (category 3, 4, or 5; with winds of 111 mph or higher). The culprits are “the absence of El Niño in the Atlantic that suppresses hurricane activity and warmer than average sea surface temperatures. Other factors are: reduced vertical wind shear, weaker tropical Atlantic trade winds and enhanced west African monsoons.
As Americans focus their attention on a safe and healthy reopening of our country, it remains critically important that we also remember to make necessary preparations for our current hurricane season.
Here are a few things to consider doing, before being confronted by a hurricane:
- Stay informed; sign up for “CTALERT,” a Connecticut communication database that keeps you advised of emergency alerts by text, email, cell phone and landline (it’s free and easy!)
- CLICK HERE to sign up for CT Alert
- Monitor weather channels for updates on forecasted conditions
- Establish a family communication plan
- Gather needed supplies for at least three days, BEFORE the storm becomes imminent; you won’t have time, and supplies may be depleted, if you wait too long
- Buy non-perishable food (human and pets)
- Buy medications (insulin, oxygen, etc.)
- Buy personal hygiene/sanitation items (5 gallon bucket and trash bags for use as a toilet)
- Buy water (1 gallon per person, a day)
- Fill your bathtub, as an additional water source
- Put together a first aid kit
- Buy batteries (flashlights, radio)
- Have candles and matches on hand
- Have cash on hand
- Gather important documents
- Buy gas for a generator (a good investment for our area; never use a generator, gasoline powered equipment, grill, camp stove inside; keep these devices outside and at least 20 feet from doors, windows, vents to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning)
- Fill propane tanks for outdoor cooking (if feasible)
- Assume that there will be extended power-outages; ask yourself: “What will my family need to survive this ordeal?” (You may not be able to leave, and emergency services may be unable to reach you!)
- Fill your car’s gas tank
- Keep cell phone charged
- If instructed to evacuate, be prepared to leave!
- If you remain, stay indoors and go to a windowless room on the lowest level that is not likely to flood (stay away from all power lines; do not take shelter in the attic.
- Do not attempt to drive through flooded streets; 6 inches of flowing
- Water can float a car; do not wade through flooded areas that may
- Be contaminated by dead animals, sewage, oil, debris, etc.
- Bring animals indoors
- You may have other needs/concerns specific to your family
- Click Here for FEMA's Secure Your Home for 2018 Hurricane Season information sheet
Remember: “It wasn’t raining when Noah built his arc!”