Hurricane season is here – make a plan now for your family!

A car is damaged by flood water in result of Hurricane Matthew in Lumberton, North Carolina, Oct. 10, 2016. Hurricane Matthew was a category 4 hurricane that formed in the Western Atlantic Ocean and affected Haiti, eastern Cuba, and the Bahamas before moving up the east coast of the United States. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class James Prosser)

A car is damaged by flood water as a result of Hurricane Matthew in Lumberton, North Carolina, Oct. 10, 2016. Hurricane Matthew was a category 4 hurricane that formed in the Western Atlantic Ocean and affected Haiti, eastern Cuba, and the Bahamas before moving up the east coast of the United States. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class James Prosser)

This is your friendly reminder that the 2017  Atlantic hurricane season starts June 1 and runs through November 30. The Atlantic hurricane region encompasses the North Atlantic Ocean, Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean. As you can guess, many Coast Guard units are located in these areas, which is why it is vital that members and dependents are prepared well in advance for hazards associated with hurricanes.

While spouses might become accustomed to taking care of things while the active duty or reserve member is deployed, out on a patrol or away on duty, it is necessary to discuss procedures for weather events and other emergencies often.

1. Prepare yourself and your family for a disaster by making or reviewing an emergency plan (download Family Communication Plan for Parents and Kids).

U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer 1st Class James Prosser is reunited with his children in Lumberton, North Carolina, Oct. 10, 2016. Hurricane Matthew was a category 4 hurricane that formed in the Western Atlantic Ocean and affected Haiti, eastern Cuba, and the Bahamas before moving up the east coast of the United States. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Master Chief Petty Officer Louis Coleman)

U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer 1st Class James Prosser is reunited with his children in Lumberton, North Carolina, Oct. 10, 2016. Hurricane Matthew was a category 4 hurricane that formed in the Western Atlantic Ocean and affected Haiti, eastern Cuba, and the Bahamas before moving up the east coast of the United States. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Master Chief Petty Officer Louis Coleman)

2. Make sure all household members are able to get alerts about an emergency from local officials. Check with your local emergency management agency to see what is available in your area, and learn more about alerts by visiting www.ready.gov/alerts.

3. Discuss the evacuation order process with your family. Military dependents, civilian employees and civilian employee dependents are issued evacuation travel orders based upon the information provided in the evacuation order. The evacuation applies to dependents residing in the vicinity of the member’s permanent duty station (PDS) or at an authorized designated location. It also applies to dependents en route to establish a residence with the member and to dependents residing in the vicinity of the member’s old or new PDS.

4. Your emergency plan should also address the care of pets, aiding family members with access and functional needs and safely shutting off utilities.

5. Ensure your legal documents are up to date. Keep insurance policies, wills, and other valuables in a safe-deposit box and in a place less likely to be damaged if a hurricane causes flooding. Take pictures on a phone or save electronic copies of important documents and files on an encrypted flash drive.

6. Brief other family members and neighbors on your plan as well so they can follow up with your dependents when you might not be able to do so.

Here are some apps to download before hurricane season starts:

 

NOTE: The Apps may request a user to turn on location services. Any location information provided by the user is strictly voluntary.

For more information on how to prepare for hurricanes and other weather events, click here.

 

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