It’s Hurricane Preparedness Week

The Red Cross reminds everyone to be prepared.

Hurricane Symbol: Interchangeable Shape – Paisley Grace Makery

Fairfax, Va. (KM) This week is Hurricane Preparedness Week. The National Capital and Chesapeake Region of the Red Cross reminds all residents  this is the time to  prepare  for these storms. In 2020,k there were 30 named hurricanes. “And so that resulted, unfortunately, in 450 deaths, and over $15-billion in damages. So we think about hurricane preparedness, we’re thinking how to mitigate the loss of life and the loss of property,” says Curt Luthye, the Executive Director of the Montgomery< Frederick and Howard County chapter  of the Red Cross.

Luthye says you need to put together an emergency kit. “In that kit, you will want a gallon of water per day, non-perishable food, flashlight, battery, battery-powered radio, and even a list of medications. So if you have any prescription meds for yourself, or even a pet, you’ll want a list of those,” he says.

In addition, you need to have an evacuation  plan all mapped out. “So you have a plan that takes into consideration multiple routes to local shelters. A way to actually get ahold of your family members. So if you have school-age kids and they happen to be back in school these days, or at a summer camp over the summer, you want a way to contact them and get them gathered back up,” says Luthye.

When hurricanes or other disasters strike, the Red Cross sometimes opens shelters for people who have to evacuate their homes. But with the possibility that COVID-19 might still be with us during the summer, Luthye says the Red Cross is working with local officials to either set up shelters in case of a storm, or put residents up in hotels. “So the Red Cross is actually working with local officials to make that determination in real time, taking into consideration CDC guidelines and what’s going to be  best for that local community,” he says.

There are also those people may wonder why they should prepare for hurricanes  because they don’t close to the ocean. “Water has a tendency to travel to some of those places we wouldn’t expect,” says Luthye. “So if you have a creek and river near you, those can  tend to rise with the heavy rainfall a hurricane brings.”

Hurricane season is June 1st through November 30th.


By Kevin McManus