The Hurricane Season is already underway having begun on June 1, 2012 and may continue till November 30. Though the NOAA have predicted a near normal season with 15 named storms 6 hurricanes and 3 of the Category 3 variety, we still cannot take our chances. One only has to come back to the devastating hurricanes that took place in the period 2004-05 to know how vulnerable Florida was under the impact of Hurricane Katrina.
The periods between August and October are known to experience high storm activity for the Atlantic Hurricane Season. At the same time, a hurricane season does not mind there will be a hurricane. If you have planned your vacations, here are some tips you can keep in mind in order to avoid being trapped in the tropical storm.
1. Check with your airline and hotel, resort about hurricane guarantee – Find out from your airline, cruise company, hotel and accommodation resort if they are able to offer you hurricane guarantee. This means that in case there is a tropical storm or hurricane and you wish to cancel your trip, you can get back the refund without incurring any additional charge. Make sure you get this in writing and maintain a copy.
2. Keep yourself informed about the development of a tropical storm through Internet, radio or newspaper. We live in the times of instant technology and access, so it is fair that we make maximum use of it because we will be able to change our plans in advance. If you are already at the destination and there is a hurricane or storm threat and you are asked to evacuate, do so.
3. Know the difference between hurricane watch and warnings – A watch means that conditions can become dangerous and the weather can turn bad, so it is better to be in the preparation mode. It does not signify an immediate threat. A ‘warning’ means a dangerous weather is going to be an immediate reality. In case of thunderstorms and flash floods, it means the event is happening. A hurricane warnings means to immediately evacuate or take shelter.
4. Check your travel insurance – Check if hurricane coverage is included in your travel insurance. Read the fine print and exclusions properly.
5. Be in contact with an out of state person – You can fill an out of state person with information about your whereabouts. You can also plan with your family members about the common place that you can meet, in case there is an emergency. Make sure that the fuel tank in your car is full. Make sure that you have enough cash on hand, ATMs and banks may be closed and this can put you in a disadvantageous position.
6. Necessities – Keep important, survival necessities and hygiene items with you. Keep an adequate supply of medications that can be useful to you or the ones who need them.