Hurricane Season is Here Again :: Let’s Get Ready

With hurricane season upon us, it is a good time to reacquaint ourselves with this meteorological menace. In true Jeopardy fashion – the answers are the questions and the questions are the answers. Play along with us for a moment. Ready?

HURRICANE JEOPARDY

Hurricanes for $200
Answer :: The date range June 1 of any year through November 20 of the same year.

Question:: What is hurricane season?

Remember, Mother Nature does not always play by the rules. The first hurricane of 2018 has already come and gone – a week before the start of hurricane season. Watch the news. Check the weather. Stay prepared.

Hurricanes for $400
Answer :: Beryl, Chris, Debby, Ernesto.

Question :: What are the names for the second, third, fourth and fifth hurricanes for the 2018 season?

The World Meteorological Organization selects storm names beginning with the letter A and working through the letter Z. There are six lists of names, so on the seventh year – we start back with the first list. There is one caveat – the names of the most destructive storms are retired. The 2017 hurricane season was so destructive that four storm names – Harvey, Irma, Maria and Nate were retired.

Hurricanes for $600
Answer :: Cape Hatteras, North Carolina… Morehead City, North Carolina… Wilmington, North Carolina… Savannah, Georgia… Miami, Florida.. and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina are U.S. cities that fall into this unfortunate category.

Question :: Which American cities are impacted by hurricanes at least every two years?

Galveston is the Texas city closest to Houston; it is impacted by a storm every 2.65 years.

Hurricanes for $800
Answer :: $125,000,000

Question: What is the financial damage caused by Hurricane Harvey?

Hurricane Harvey was one of the most costly natural disasters in U.S. history coming in second behind Hurricane Katrina.

Hurricanes for $1000
Answer :: August 25, 2017

Question:: What is the date Hurricane Harvey made landfall in Texas?

While Harvey first hit land on the 25th, it danced back and forth between land and sea several times over the course of week. The lingering heavy rains caused catastrophic flooding in the Houston area. By the end of Harvey’s rampage, 13 million people had been affected, schools and business closed for weeks, over 200,000 homes were damaged, over 12,000 homes were entirely lost and the death toll stood at 88.

POST HURRICANE THOUGHTS

Nine months later, evidence of Harvey is not uncommon in the Houston area and some families are still in the process of recovering. Hurricanes, by nature, are unstoppable. Also by nature, their possibilities are very much open to speculation. Where exactly will it hit? How long will it remain in the area? Should we evacuate? And when it passes, what will remain?

After a laborious, extremely stressful, and at time scary evacuation prior to Hurricane Rita in 2005, I vowed that I would only attempt to leave the area under the worst of predictions and then – it would have to be well before the mass exodus that puts Houston freeways on permastop. So when news of Harvey began surfacing, I prepared to ride out the storm at home. My neighborhood has never flooded and I felt confident that we would deal with some nasty weather – but we were not in danger of flooding. I felt foolish {and nothing short of lucky} watching the timelines of those who once thought the same thing and were less fortunate than me. Mother Nature clearly had no respect for history or the thoughts and expectations of mere mortal men.

Therefore, this year, I will do better.

A FEW OF MY PERSONAL THOUGHTS AND LESSONS 

  • My camping supplies, hurricane preparedness goods and Zombiepocalypse survival kit are quite similar. No need to reinvent the wheel. Multi-purposing works.
  • There is no such thing as too many batteries, flashlights, lanterns or power packs. I will fight you if you say otherwise.
  • During a brief rain pause, I let my daughter stand knee-deep in front of our home. I had no idea that during flooding, water treatment centers overflow and sewage flows into the water in the streets. Ew. I know it’s late, but someone is getting a nice warm bleach bath when she gets home today.
  • Bag up, back up, and pack up important stuff just in case of a water invasion or quick evacuation. Birth certificates, social security cards, insurance papers, pictures, kids, old people… anything you will have a hard time replacing, will need or just want to hold onto a little longer – arrange safe keeping.
  • Think out meals in advance. The kind that do not require cooking. Just in case. I was not prepared for the store closures and inability for food to be delivered to stores and restaurants as a result of flooding. The best thing I can say about our hurricane meals is that they kept us from starving to death. Ritz crackers and ketchup might or might not be the worst thing we ate.
  • Gas up and keep your vehicles with a full tank of gas before the crazy begins. This is also beneficial in the Zombiepocalypse.

A FEW OF MY FAVORITE RESOURCES

Kuddoes to Jacob Hunter. This is the realest hurricane prep article I have ever read. It is a little extreme in places, however, it lists several things I did not know or had never considered.

This is my favorite site for comprehensive categorized lists. Great stuff for the professional preparer. I am not here yet. I am more of a grade school to junior high level preparer. 

My favorite list with actions to take prior to and after the storm goes to the Red Cross.  

My favorite comprehensive quick list goes to Max Mayfield.

The power of Mother Nature is undeniable. Freeways under water. Families being rescued by boats in newly formed rivers in streets. Empty grocery store shelves. Impassible roads. Homes without power. With one hurricane already in the books even before the start of hurricane season – we may have just received a warning of things to come. It’s definitely time to get ready.

What are your best resources for preparing for Hurricane Season?

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One Response to Hurricane Season is Here Again :: Let’s Get Ready

  1. Montoya
    Montoya June 20, 2018 at 3:56 pm #

    Thank you for this, Joi! After reading this, I *finally* went and purchased flood insurance. When we purchased our house we were told we wouldn’t need it but as you said “Mother Nature clearly had no respect for history or the thoughts and expectations of mere mortal men” We don’t want to be caught off guard.

    And AMEN to the batteries! I had a battery bag that has been upgraded to a battery box filled with batteries of all sizes. No such thing as too many!

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