Be Prepared for an “Above Normal” Hurricane Season

The 2024 Atlantic Hurricane Season is here. Are you ready?

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is predicting an “above normal” Atlantic Hurricane Season this year.  That means we can expect 17-25 named storms between June 1 and November 30, with 4-7 likely to be major hurricanes. Forecasters have 70% confidence in these ranges.

It only takes one major storm to create a disaster.

You may think you’re ready—you’ve got some bottled water and canned goods to last a few days. Maybe you plan to get those things, just as soon as you hear the next hurricane will make landfall near you. But as we’ve learned in the past, tropical storms can quickly strengthen and change their paths. Disaster preparedness is a mind-set it’s best to be in all year, no matter where you live in Florida.

The immediate safety of yourself and your family is the most important thing to take care of. But beyond that, what about the trees around your house—can they withstand high winds and heavy rainfall? Or your pets or livestock—do you know where they can shelter if you had to leave your home? Do you have important documents in a safe place—insurance, titles, birth certificates? Do you have photos of your pre-storm property you can show to claims adjusters? Do you know what to do and who to call after the storm?

It’s a lot to think about, especially with a hurricane bearing down on you. To avoid stress and act effectively, it’s good to have all your questions answered well before the “cone of uncertainty” is aimed at you.

UF/IFAS checklist to prepare for a busy hurricane season

Fortunately, UF/IFAS Extension has compiled an up-to-date collection of resources covering virtually every aspect of disaster preparation and recovery. It’s a good idea to review these early and often during the next six months.

UF/IFAS Disaster Preparation and Recovery

The UF/IFAS Disaster Preparation and Recovery website ( has useful information for homeowners, businesses, nurseries, marinas, ranches, farms, and communities. The website is updated frequently, and new hurricane-related blogs are posted almost daily. It’s a good place to stay up on the latest hurricane information.

Screen capture of disaster website

Florida EDEN

The Florida Extension Disaster Education Network (EDEN) ( is another great place to go for information. Florida EDEN is part of a nationwide effort of state Cooperative Extension Services to reduce the impact of disasters through research-based information.

Logo for the Florida EDEN Extension Disaster Education Network

You can subscribe to the EDEN newsletter to get current information and updates as the situation changes:

Bear in mind, however, that during major storms you can expect power and internet outages, when bookmarks are no use. It’s best to learn from these online resources now, act on what you can and print out things like checklists, maps and contact numbers and keep them in a safe place.

Information First Responders

Throughout Florida, Extension personnel act as information first-responders—we’re boots on the ground who go into situations where there is an immediate need for timely and accurate information. This is especially true in the case of natural disasters. During times of emergency, many Extension agents serve on their county’s Emergency Operations Centers (EOCs), doing 12+ hour shifts tracking storm conditions and answering needs for help. We’re also representatives of the Florida State Agricultural Response Team (SART), helping to monitor the water quality in wells and rounding up livestock that have strayed over ruined fencing.

Woman reads an announcement in front of large video screen.
Eva Pabon, UF/IFAS Extension Osceola County, reads the safety report at an Emergency Operations Center, Sept. 28, 2022.

After the storm has cleared, many agents are out assessing the damage to communities, farms, and ranchlands so that those affected can get assistance and apply for emergency aid.

Here at UF/IFAS Extension, we prepare for disasters all year round, and when hurricane season gets here, we are on full alert.

We urge you to be prepared too, and to remember that if you need help in an emergency, we are there for you.

To find the UF/IFAS Extension office near you, visit: 


Avatar photo
Posted: June 13, 2024

Category: Disaster Preparation, UF/IFAS Extension
Tags: Hurricane Preparation, Hurricane Season, Mitigation, Recovery, Response

Subscribe For More Great Content

IFAS Blogs Categories