Be Prepared – Hurricane Season Begins June 1

The NOAA (National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration) Climate Prediction Center is forecasting an active or extremely active season this year.  For the six-month hurricane season, which begins June 1 and ends November 30, there is a 70 percent 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).  These ranges are well above the seasonal average of 12 named storms, 6 hurricanes and 3 major hurricanes. 

More than 90 years have passed since the Tampa Bay area has been directly impacted by a major hurricane, but it only takes one storm to threaten, cause damage and disrupt our lives. History teaches that a lack of hurricane awareness and preparation are common threads among all major hurricane disasters. By knowing your vulnerability and what actions you should take, you can reduce the effects of a hurricane disaster.

Hurricane hazards come in many forms, including storm surge, heavy rainfall, inland flooding, high winds, tornadoes, and rip currents. It is important that your hurricane preparedness plan addresses all of these hazards. The National Weather Service is responsible for protecting life and property through issuance of timely watches and warnings, but it is essential that your family be ready before a storm approaches. Your individual preparedness actions greatly contribute to USF’s ability to prepare, respond to and recover from any storm, regardless of its intensity.

Download the Tropical Cyclone Preparedness Guide (PDF) or follow the links for more information. But remember, this is only a guide. The first and most important thing anyone should do when facing a hurricane threat is to use common sense. 

To learn more about how you can prepare and minimize your risk during the 2013 hurricane season, visit USF’s Emergency Management website at  Be prepared and be safe!