HOUSTON - Hurricane season starts on June 1st. So far all of the organizations that forecast the severity of the tropical season have indicated that we should expect the 2013 season to be more active than normal.
That should be a signal for all of us to make sure we're prepared in case a tropical storm should make landfall in Southeast Texas.
Alas, many, if not most of you will wait. A week. Maybe a month. Or maybe until a storm is actually brewing. It makes for a tight squeeze at the grocery or hardware store with the other thousand procrastinators and adds an unnecessary layer of danger for you and your family.
The National Hurricane Center is trying to do its part to make sure you're as ready as you can be and this week is a great time to become familiar with the great advice available. Through a series of Youtube videos, the National Hurricane Center meteorologists offer valuable information about a variety of important issues.
(Photo from U.S. Navy)
Storm Surge: The basic information you need to know about storm surge, including the fact that it is the most dangerous hazard associated with a hurricane. Find the Storm Surge You tube clip here.
Winds: Tropical force winds range from the 39-73 mph for Tropical Storm force to the 74-180mph ranges for the various categories of hurricane strength as determined by the Saffier-Simpson scale. Click here to see the National Hurricane Center video on wind preparedness.
(Photo from U.S. Navy)
Inland Flooding: More than 25% of fatalities from hurricanes are the result of inland flooding. Brought on by storm surge and heavy rain, the inland flooding can affect areas many miles away from the coast. Watch the video here.
(Photo from NASA)
Forecast process: Your best chance for survival depends in large part on the accuracy of forecasts from the National Hurricane Center. This video talks about the interaction and communication among hurricane hunter aircraft, satellites, buoy data and Doppler radar and the computers that crunch numbers to get the most reliable information.
Get a plan and take action! None of what the National Hurricane Center does has any meaning if you don't take advantage of the information to create your own personal plan and be prepared to put it into action.
This is it! Time to raise your personal level of awareness about the onset of Hurricane season and possibility that a storm could impact Southeast Texas. There are no excuses.
If you need a personal one on one tutoring, consider taking advantage of the many community meetings being held throughout Southeast Texas by the Houston-Galveston office of the National Weather Service.
Several more are scheduled for the Houston/Galveston area in the next several weeks. Try to attend at least one. It could make a life saving difference.