15 ways union members can prepare before a hurricane
What's in store for the 6-month hurricane season that started in June? The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) suggests an active or extremely active season this year:
- 13 to 20 named storms - winds of 39 mph or higher,
- of which 7 to 11 could be hurricanes - winds of 74 mph or higher,
- including 3 to 6 major hurricanes - winds 111 mph or higher.
With the tragedy of Hurricane Sandy close to home for many union members, union members must be informed to remain safe through the harshest conditions.
Use these 15 tips from Ready.gov to be prepared by planning ahead this hurricane season.
- Build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
- Know your surroundings.
- Learn the elevation level of your property and whether the land is flood-prone. This will help you know how your property will be affected when storm surge or tidal flooding are forecasted.
- Identify levees and dams in your area and determine whether they pose a hazard to you.
- Learn community hurricane evacuation routes and how to find higher ground. Determine where you would go and how you would get there if you needed to evacuate.
- Make plans to secure your property:
- Cover all of your home's windows. Permanent storm shutters offer the best protection for windows.
- A second option is to board up windows with 5/8" marine plywood, cut to fit and ready to install. Tape does not prevent windows from breaking.
- Install straps or additional clips to securely fasten your roof to the frame structure. This will reduce roof damage.
- Be sure trees and shrubs around your home are well trimmed so they are more wind resistant.
- Clear loose and clogged rain gutters and downspouts.
- Reinforce your garage doors; if wind enters a garage it can cause dangerous and expensive structural damage.
- Plan to bring in all outdoor furniture, decorations, garbage cans and anything else that is not tied down.
- Determine how and where to secure your boat.
- Install a generator for emergencies.
- If in a high-rise building, be prepared to take shelter on or below the 10th floor.
- Consider building a safe room.
And if disaster does strike, see if you're eligible for Union Plus Disaster Relief, which has raised $972,500 for union members.
Related: What every emergency kit needs.