Ike Preparation Day

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  1. I saw your post on preparations and wanted to post a fairly succint fact sheet for your readers in Ike’s path (I live and work in the Willowbrook area, so I’m preparing too)
    Hurricane dangers:
    Storm surge: The storm surge usually comes on shore with the bulk of the storm and endangers primarily coastal areas. Storm surges can range from a few inches to 20 feet or more depending on the strength of the storm.
    Severe thunderstorms: By their very nature, hurricanes contain strong thunderstorms. The National Weather Service (NWS) defines a severe thunderstorm as having winds of at least 58 mph or hail greater than ¾” in diameter (that’s about dime-sized). A storm that spawns a tornado is obviously also considered severe. Lightning strikes are also common with severe storms and can cause considerable damage to people and property.
    Wind damage: As the wind speed of a storm increases, so does the potential for wind damage. The fastest winds usually exist close to the eye of the storm and they tend to be progressively weaker as you get farther from the eye.
    Flooding: In addition to the dangers of the storm surge, flooding with any tropical system can be wide spread and devastating. The slower a storm moves, and the wider it is determines the amount of rainfall that can be expected over a given area. In general, the majority of the damage inflicted by tropical systems is secondary to the flooding associated with these storms.
    Tornadoes: Many hurricanes spawn multiple tornadoes within their rain bands as they come ashore. These tornadoes can cause small pockets of intense local damage within the hurricane’s path, but do not account for the majority of the damage inflicted.
    Appropriate actions:
    Hurricane watch: A hurricane watch is issued when hurricane conditions are expected to occur within 24 to 36 hours. During a hurricane watch, you should do the following:
    • Listen to hurricane progress reports (radio, TV, Internet, etc) and have your NOAA emergency weather radio on hand.
    • Heed all evacuation recommendations from local officials
    • Check your emergency supplies and make any last-minute additions you need to your disaster kit, “go bag” etc. (see our fact sheets on disaster kits and “go bags”)
    • Review the back of your emergency wallet card from MyDisasterPlan.com for your Family Disaster Plan summary
    • Fill your car’s fuel tank and any spare fuel containers you have (store them properly)
    • Secure your outdoor belongings like patio furniture, potted plants, etc.
    • Board up windows, close shutters, and secure outdoor antennas
    • Consider turning refrigerator and freezer to their coldest settings and only open them if absolutely necessary
    • Gather drinking water in clean containers and tubs and sinks
    • Review your information in MyDisasterPlan.com, ensure that it is accurate and up-to-date
    • Download reports from MyDisasterPlan.com in PDF or print forms and keep in your disaster kit (see our fact sheets on Disaster Kits and “go bags”) especially the home inventory, family disaster plan, property report and wallet cards.
    Hurricane Warning: A hurricane warning is issued when hurricane conditions are expected in 24 hours or less. During a hurricane warning, you should do the following:
    • Continue to monitor weather conditions; have a battery-operated TV or radio ready like a NOAA emergency weather radio.
    • Get out of mobile homes if at all possible, find a safe structure or evacuate
    • Secure valuables and papers in waterproof containers on the highest level of your home or in your disaster kit
    • Call your out-of-town contacts listed on your MyDisasterPlan.com Family Disaster Plan and let them know where you plan to be during the storm
    During the storm:
    • Stay inside and stay away from windows
    • Use flashlights as needed, but avoid open flames like candles if at all possible
    • Once electrical power is lost, consider un-plugging major appliances to avoid power surges as the power returns later
    • Periodically call your out-of-town contact ( from your MyDisasterPlan.com Family Disaster Plan) to provide updates if possible
    After the storm:
    • Give first aid as needed to your family and neighbors
    • Do not move seriously injured people unless they are in immediate danger, wait for trained rescuers if at all possible
    • Check for gas leaks, downed power lines, and sewage leaks; avoid these hazards at all cost
    • Watch for snakes and insects displaced by the storm
    • Take pictures of the damage to compare to your MyDisasterPlan.com Property Report and Home Inventory (this will be valuable when dealing with your insurance agent)
    There’s also a coupon code active until 9/15/08 for our website http://www.MyDisasterPlan.com that will get you 20% off your 1st year subscription. It was posted on Freebies4mom.com a couple weeks ago…it’s MDP4mom (use it at check-out)

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