With one named storm this summer, hurricane and tropical storm season is already underway. Tropical Storm Isaias came through the mid-Atlantic in early August before making its way north, but there are likely more to come.
With that in mind, this week is Hurricane Preparedness Week in Anne Arundel County, Maryland.
Hurricane season officially runs through the end of November, but mid-August through the end of October is typically peak season for the storms.
While the state’s capital city, Annapolis, may be keeping an eye on storms brewing off the coast, many of their tips are relevant to residents throughout Maryland, Virginia and D.C.
The county’s Office of Emergency Management provided the following tips, broken down by days of the week, so you can keep your family safe, especially in the coronavirus era.
Tuesday, Aug. 18 – Make a plan and stay informed
- Discuss emergency plans with your family or members of your household that includes what to do if an evacuation is required.
- Learn the local government agencies’ social media handles and follow radio and television stations for emergency information and alerts.
- Save phone calls during a storm for emergencies, because phone cells can be overwhelmed. Use emails or text messages when possible.
Wednesday, Aug. 19 – Consider your personal safety during COVID-19
- Follow social distancing guidelines if you must evacuate: stay 6 feet apart from those not in your family.
- Take cleaning or sanitizing items like soap, hand sanitizer or home cleaning products, with you.
Thursday, Aug. 20 – Be financially prepared
- Gather and safely store critical financial information
- Document property damage from a storm with photos.
- Consider keeping a small amount of cash on hand, and also saving money in an emergency account for any crisis.
- Obtain or review property, health and life insurance. Consider purchasing flood insurance.
Friday, Aug. 21 – Build a go kit
- Include face coverings (at least two per person), wipes, hand sanitizer and personal care products.
- Check flashlights and make sure you have batteries on hand for radios and other devices.
- Pack a week’s worth of medicine and a first aid kit for yourself and pets.
- Have a five-day supply of nonperishable foods and drinking water for each member of your family.
- Have extra blankets or sleeping bags available in case there is a power outage in cold weather.
Saturday, Aug. 22 – Plan for pets
- Have an emergency kit for pets.
- Keep photos and digital records of pets in case you get separated.
- Bring animals and pets indoors.
- Know of shelters that you can leave your pets with if necessary, or shelters that will accept you and your pets.