Hurricane or Tropical Storm Watches and Warnings

It is important to know the difference between hurricane or tropical storm watches and warnings.



Watches


An announcement that tropical storm/hurricane conditions are possible somewhere within the specified coastal area within 48 hours.

Procedures


When a hurricane or tropical storm watch is issued:
  • Fuel family vehicles.
  • Store and secure outdoor objects such as lawn furniture and other loose lightweight objects such as toys, garden tools, and garbage cans.
  • Prepare to cover all window and door openings with boards, shutters, or other shielding materials.
  • Check food and water supplies.
  • Have clean, air-tight containers on hand to store at least two weeks of drinking water (14 gallons per person), and stock up on canned provisions.
  • Keep a small cooler with frozen gel packs handy for packing refrigerated items.
  • Check prescription medicines - obtain at least 10 days to two weeks supply.
  • Stock up on extra batteries for radios, flashlights, and lanterns.
  • Check and replenish first-aid supplies.
  • Have on hand an extra supply of cash.

Warnings


An announcement that tropical storm/hurricane conditions are expected somewhere within the specified coastal area within 36 hours

Procedures


When a hurricane or tropical storm warning is issued:
  • Follow instructions issued by civil defense.
  • Leave immediately if ordered to do so.
  • Complete preparation activities, such as boarding up windows and storing loose objects.
  • Wedge sliding glass doors to prevent their lifting from their tracks.
  • Turn up your refrigerator to maximum cold and don't open unless necessary.
  • Evacuate areas that might be affected by storm surge flooding.
  • If evacuating, leave early and leave food and water for pets (shelters will not take them).
  • Notify neighbors and a family member outside of the warned area of your evacuation plans.
  • Use phone only for emergencies.