Preparing for the 2020 hurricane season
BATON ROUGE - As hurricane season approaches, Louisiana's leaders are reminding residents to prepare for possible storms.
This year, hurricane season begins on June 1 and ends on November 30 and some experts believe this season will bring slightly above normal activity. One prediction calls for 16 named storms and 8 hurricanes with 4 being considered major (category 3 strength or higher).
There are typically an annual average of 12 named storms, 6 hurricanes and 3 major hurricanes.
Click here for more information on these predictions.
In sharp contrast to what's expected for this hurricane season, during 2019, Hurricane Barry was the lone major storm to make landfall in Louisiana. And soon after Barry came ashore, it pelted some parts of the state with more than 20 inches of rain.
But thanks to the careful work of meteorologists who study and track storms like Barry, most residents were able to prepare.
Officials say it's imperative to stay tuned to meteorological forecasts during the upcoming season.
In addition to remaining alert to local weather reports, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, of FEMA, suggests families monitor evacuation routes and make sure the entire family is ready to leave the home quickly.
Plan ahead for possible evacuation orders
To do so, everyone in the family should have a go-bag that's ready and waiting should they need to make an immediate departure that doesn't leave any time for packing.
FEMA also suggests that in case of evacuation orders, families pick an out-of-state contact everyone can call to check-in and report their status. It's also recommended that parents and children determine a location to meet up should they somehow become separated during a natural disaster.
Secure important documents and emergency items
According to officials with FEMA, an additional step in the process of hurricane readiness is to have important documents and emergency supplies on hand at all times.
This can be achieved by building your supplies over time; simply add a few items to your stock each week or month.
Stock at least a three-day supply of food items that do not need refrigeration and will last. Regularly replace items like water, food, medications, and batteries that go bad over time.
Another important tip is to place any important documents in a waterproof container to help keep them dry and easily accessible.
Outside of the natural disaster scenario it's easy to take small items like matches and flashlights for granted, but if you stock up on these prior to a hurricane, you'll be glad you did.
For a complete list of emergency supplies, visit ready.gov/prepare, and additional tips from FEMA can be downloaded here, in the organization's PDF document, entitled, "How to Prepare for a Hurricane."
Click here for even more information on hurricane readiness.
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