Preseason Hurricane Tips

The Evacuation Question: To Stay or Leave?
Coastal residents may need to decide whether or not to evacuate. If local officials recommend that you evacuate, do so immediately.

Before You Decide
  • Be sure to have pictures or at the very least, serial numbers and a description of items in your house for insurance purposes. Take your copy of the policy with you.
  • If possible, you may wish to make prior arrangements with family or friends.
  • If you live in a mobile or modular home, plan to leave.
  • Know the elevation of your property above mean sea level.
  • Know the quickest route to the nearest storm shelter.
  • Realize that you will not be the only 1 heading inland. Be ready to leave on short notice.
Boat Owner & Marina Operators
The boating community almost always suffers large losses when a hurricane comes ashore. The boat owner in particular must stay up to date on the latest forecasts and positions of tropical storms and hurricanes, and be ready to act long before the storm makes its final approach.

  • Be sure to remove any non-Essential items and have pictures and a written description of the vessel for insurance purposes.
  • Boat owners should have all the necessary gear on board for properly tying down the vessel at the start of the boating season. Precious time will be lost if you are rushing around searching for gear when the storm is approaching.
  • Have a plan worked out with the marina operator so there are no questions or any confusion when the time comes to tie up or pull the boat out of the water.
  • Realize that you may not be able to pull your boat out of the water. Your only alternative will be to properly tie your boat down. Practice these procedures at the start of the season.
The Inland Wind Threat
Inland residents may not need to evacuate, but must properly prepare their property for high winds and disrupted utility power. Tips
  • Be ready to obtain bottled water. Local water supplies often become contaminated after hurricanes.
  • Boarding up windows is a necessity for homes exposed to high winds. Have nails and boards on hand for this purpose.
  • Do not use candles. Many people have been injured or killed during and after hurricanes from fires set off by candles.
  • Have canned food and other items that do not need refrigeration on hand. It is almost a certainty that electrical and phone power will be disrupted.
  • Have plenty of batteries on hand for flash lights, AM/FM radios, and your NOAA weather radio.
  • Know where you will store outdoor furniture.
The Often Forgotten River Flood Threat
While most southern New Englanders relate hurricanes to severe coastal flooding, and rightfully so, history shows us that 15 tropical storms and hurricanes since 1900 have caused significant inland small stream and river flooding.

  • Be ready to evacuate immediately if flooding occurs or is expected to occur.
  • If the inland river flood threat is high, you may wish to evacuate before the hurricane hits.
  • Know where the closest storm shelter is located, and the quickest route to it.
  • Like coastal residents and boat owners, have pictures and descriptions of items in your home for insurance purposes.
Impact of Hurricanes
Of all the many weather hazards that affect southern New England, the hurricane is by far the most destructive. Unlike most other weather hazards, a hurricane can impact every area of southern New England producing the deadly combination of coastal inundation, severe wind damage both along the coast as well as inland, and torrential rainfall resulting in widespread small stream and river flooding.

Respect the power of the hurricane and be ready to act should one pose a threat to our area. View more tips.