Heading out for vacation? Know your risks for hurricanes

In many parts of the country, summer is the ideal season to travel or relax on the shore. However, summer is not all fun. It’s also hurricane season, which runs through Nov. 30.

Hurricanes and tropical storms cause heavy rains, winds and floods in many areas of the U.S. during the season, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Areas along the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico coasts are among those affected, as well as Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Hawaii and even parts of the Southwest and Pacific coast.

Before you make vacation plans, research your destination. This FEMA map shows areas impacted by hurricanes and tropical storms over the past 160 years.

If your vacation location is at risk, you should make an emergency supply kit. Your kit should contain all the tools you need if a hurricane hits. For example, it should include food, water, maps, batteries and a flashlight. It should also include first-aid supplies like bandages, a thermometer and prescription medications.

You should also learn about local alert systems in the area you’re visiting. Sign up for alerts from the National Weather Service and download the American Red Cross’ hurricane app. If you’re staying at a hotel or resort, ask staff how you’ll be informed if a hurricane is coming and what the plans are for shelter or evacuation.

Follow the recommendations of officials if a hurricane is on its way. If you’re told to leave the area, don’t hesitate.

For more tips on hurricane preparedness, check out our Get Ready hurricane fact sheet.

Written by: Sophia Goswami

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