June 1 is right around the corner and that date signals the start of hurricane season. The new hurricane season forecast predicts the number of named storms and hurricanes in the 2015 Atlantic season to stay below historical averages. A total of nine named storms, five hurricanes and one major hurricane are expected this season. Lack of hurricane awareness and preparation are common threads among all major hurricane disasters. Storm surge, heavy rainfall, flooding, high winds, tornadoes, and rip currents are all hazards associated with hurricanes. The National Weather Service issues timely watches and warnings to keep us informed about an approaching storm. But it is essential that you and your family take time to prepare before a storm approaches.
The UF/IFAS Solutions for Your Life webpage at http://solutionsforyourlife.ufl.edu/disaster_prep/ has lots of great resources. There is an updated Florida Homeowner Handbook which covers everything from protecting your family and property to what important documents you need to have.
Another great resource for Pinellas County residents is the Pinellas County Emergency Management webpage at http://www.pinellascounty.org/emergency/. Whether you are looking for evacuation zone information, shelter options or procedures on re-entering the county you will find it there.
National Hurricane Preparedness Week 2015 runs from May 24th through May 30th so get ready, get set, prepare!