COVID RESPONSE
Southeastern Synod ELCA

Tips to Stay Safe During a Hurricane

July 08, 2020

An above-normal 2020 Atlantic hurricane season is expected, according to predictions and forecasts by NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Service.  There is a 60% chance of an above-normal season. With the predicted intensity of this year’s hurricane season and the already unusual activity, it is more important than ever to stay well-informed about hurricane preparedness measures. While it is impossible to know for certain if a hurricane will make landfall in the U.S. this season, keep in mind that even a weak tropical storm can cause major impacts. The Southeastern Synod’s Disaster Team monitors all threats and will work with individual Congregational Disaster Coordinators to communicate during a storm but you can be prepared by checking out the following information from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

If your congregation has not designated a Congregational Disaster Coordinator, please do so by clicking HERE.

Stay informed:
  • Listen for emergency information and alerts.
  • If told to evacuate by local officials, do so immediately.
Dealing with the weather:
  • Determine how best to protect yourself from high winds and flooding.
  • Take refuge in a designated storm shelter, or an interior room for high winds.
  • If trapped in a building by flooding, go to the highest level of the building.
    • Do not climb into a closed attic. You may become trapped by rising flood water.
  • Do not walk, swim, or drive through flood waters. Turn Around, Don’t Drown!
    • Just six inches of fast-moving water can knock you down, and one foot of moving water can sweep your vehicle away.
  • Stay off bridges over fast-moving water. Personal Safety during COVID-19 · If you must go to a community or group shelter, remember to follow the latest guidelines from the CDC for protecting yourself and family.
  • Be prepared to take cleaning items with you, such as soap, hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes, or general household cleaning supplies to disinfect surfaces you may need to touch regularly.
  • Maintain at least six feet between you and persons not part of your immediately family while at shelters.
    • Avoid crowds or gathering in groups as much as possible.
  • Anyone over two years old should use a cloth face covering while at these facilities.

Other Hurricane Preparedness Tips:
  • Hurricanes are not just a coastal problem: find out how rain, wind, and water could impact where you live so you can start preparing now.
  • Discuss your hurricane emergency plan with your household and the latest CDC guidance on Coronavirus (COVID-19).
  • Have enough supplies for your household: include medication, disinfectant supplies, cloth face coverings, and pet supplies in your go bag or car trunk.
  • If you or anyone in your household is an individual with a disability, identify if you may need additional help during an emergency.
  • You may have to evacuate quickly due to a hurricane, so make sure to know your local evacuation zone.
  • Review your insurance policies and make sure personal documents (i.e., ID) are up to date.
  • Prepare your business with a continuity plan to continue operating when disaster strikes.
 
For more information on hurricane preparedness, visit ready.gov/hurricanes. For up to date information on COVID-19, visit the CDC website.