Your home must be Impact Ready before a hurricane hits. Southwest Florida is a popular tourist destination well-known for its warm weather and sandy beaches, but along with beautiful weather comes the risk of hurricanes.
Hurricane season officially takes place in Florida from June 1st through November 30th of every year. Although the number of tropical storms and hurricanes typically peaks during August and September, it is important to remember that Florida can be impacted by tropical weather systems at any time; both during the six month long season and sometimes outside of the official season.
These storms can cause great harm, which is why it is important for all Southwest Florida residents to be prepared and have an emergency plan in place to keep safe. It is vital to have a list of important telephone numbers such as the fire and police departments, shelters, hospital and county emergency management offices. This guide to selected resources will better assist you in preparing for the worse.
Locally, all county emergency management centers are equipped to coordinate community resources to protect lives, property and the environment through planning, preparedness, response and recovery from all disasters that may impact your county. These centers are equipped with any information you may need regarding a disaster or emergency in your area. Here is the contact information for the Lee, Collier, and Sarasota County Emergency Management Centers:
- Lee County Emergency Operations Center – Phone: 239-533-0622
- Collier County Emergency Management Center – Phone: 239-252-3600
- Sarasota County Emergency Services – Phone: 941-61-5000
The WINK News Hurricane Guide is also a great resource to help you and your families prepare and track during a hurricane season. This handy guide has been compiled with vital information on creating an emergency plan, what to include in your survival kit, and other hurricane protection related information. This hurricane guide can be found on the WINK News website, at your local grocery store or newspaper.
The American Red Cross Florida’s Southern Gulf Chapter, located in Naples, prevents and alleviates suffering on the face of emergencies by assembling volunteers at disaster areas to assist with relief, health and safety, and blood donations. This non-profit is a great resource to include as part of your emergency preparedness plan.
The state of Florida also has statewide hotlines that anyone can use for emergency related information. The Department of Financial Services Storm Hotline can be reached at (800-227-8676), and the State of Florida Emergency Information (800-342-3557).
When a storm threatens your community, stay informed by monitoring the latest forecasts and warnings from the National Weather Service. The National Hurricane Center/NOAA (http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/) will issue tropical storm and hurricane watches and warnings to help you prepare for a storm. Watches are issued up to 48 hours in advance of the time damaging winds are possible and warnings are issued 36 hours prior to the time when damaging winds are expected. The Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA) provides up-to-date resources and information on storms and relief efforts. You may also have the opportunity to apply for assistance through this agency if you are impacted by a natural disaster.
Remember, safety should be your first priority when a hurricane or severe storm hits our state, especially SWFL. It is important to be prepared and always have an emergency plan in place for yourself and your family. This guide should assist you in gathering information, planning, taking action, and recovering, if ever we should be hit with severe weather or a disaster.
Impact-Ready, Inc. can help. Contact us today for the latest in hurricane and storm window protection technology and helpful information!