May 26 – June 1 is National Hurricane Preparedness Week
Just one week after a devastating tornado storm rips through Norman and Moore, OK, killing 24 and causing an estimated $2B in property damage, US cities now face another natural hazard, hurricanes.
June 1st is the official start of the 6-month hurricane season. For 2013, NOAA’s Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook suggests a 70% likelihood of 13 to 20 named storms (winds of 39 mph or higher), of which 7 to 11 could become hurricanes (winds of 74 mph or higher), including 3 to 6 major hurricanes (Category 3, 4 or 5; winds of 111 mph or higher).
Hurricanes can cause catastrophic damage to coastlines and several hundred miles inland. Hurricanes can produce winds exceeding 155 miles per hour as well as tornadoes and mircrobursts. Additionally, hurricanes can create storm surges along the coast and cause extensive damage from heavy rainfall. Floods and flying debris from the excessive winds are often the deadly and destructive results of these weather events.
“As we saw first-hand with Sandy, it’s important to remember that tropical storm and hurricane impacts are not limited to the coastline. Strong winds, torrential rain, flooding, and tornadoes often threaten inland areas far from where the storm first makes landfall,” said Kathryn Sullivan, Ph.D., NOAA acting administrator.
Slow moving hurricanes that churn through mountainous regions tend to produce especially heavy rain and can trigger, flash floods, landslides. or mud slides.
Individuals who live in communities at high risk of being affected by a hurricane should consider flood insurance protection. Flood insurance is the only way to financially protect your property or business from flood damage.
To learn more about your flooding risk and how to protect yourself and your business, visit the Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration (NFIP) Web site, www.floodsmart.gov or call 1-800-427-2419.
To learn more about how you can prepare for hurricane season, visit www.ready.gov/hurricanes.