CHRIS MOORE — Tropical disturbance reminds us to be prepared
June 1 marked the beginning of hurricane season and like clockwork a tropical disturbance formed in the Gulf of Mexico. As of Tuesday morning, the National Hurricane Center estimated a 70 percent chance for it to form into a tropical cyclone with anywhere from the Texas coast to Southeast Louisiana in the zone.
While it does not pose any imminent threat now, it is definitely something to watch.
Many of us are veterans of hurricane preparedness at this point, after last year’s particularly active season, rehashing some tips is always a good idea.
The most important thing to do is developing an evacuation plan and set it in motion as soon as possible once the threat becomes imminent. The closer we get towards the storm making landfall, the more difficult it is going to be, not only to book hotels, but travel in general. Also, be sure to know multiple routes to your destination. Roadways start to become congested after evacuation orders are given.
Have a to-go bag with necessities. It is better to pack sooner rather than later. It is more difficult to remember everything we need if we try to pack while we are rushing.
Make a plan for your pets. Know in advance which hotels accept pets.
Local elected officials will tell you when it is time to go.
Make sure you have plenty of food and water, keep a full tank of gas, a full stock of medicine and prescriptions and batteries and chargers.
Every year, hurricanes and significant rain events cause damage to homes. Be sure to check with you insurance providers to see what type of coverage you have on your home and vehicles. Know where your insurance documents are located and take them with you if you evacuate.
In the past four years, Southeast Texas has seen two of the top four largest rain events in the country’s history, which caused many homes to flood. Make sure your coverage includes flood insurance, which requires a 30-day waiting period. The sooner you can get it, the better.
Do what you can to fortify your home. Cover windows, trim trees, secure doors and loose items around the outside of the home.
Help your neighbors prepare and help each other evacuate if necessary. Be sure to check up on them after the storm passes.
Check with dependable sources on the storm’s path. Be aware of what is social media speculation and what is a trusted resource.
Lastly, be sure to make a physical or digital checklist. Making a list now is already late, but better late than never.
Preparing now can save a lot of time, energy and potentially a life. Preparedness equals resiliency.
Chris Moore is the sports editor for Port Arthur Newsmedia. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.