SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - In 2017, Hurricane Irma skidded up the Suncoast giving everyone a wake-up call that it only takes one storm to cause devastation. Years later in 2020, there was a record-breaking number of storms with 30 named systems. And soon, the 2021 season will be coming arrive.
With June 1 being the first official day of hurricane season, you now have less than 100 days to be prepared.
The National Hurricane Center recommends you take these steps to prepare:
- First, know your zone so that you know if you are in one of the areas being evacuated.
- Second, have an emergency kit with water, food, flashlights and other essential items.
- Third, create and review your families’ emergency plan so that everyone knows what to do when the time comes.
- Fourth, check your insurance policy to make sure you are protected if your house or property takes a hit.
- Finally, understand the National Weather Service forecast and know the difference between a watch and a warning.
If an evacuation order is place in your zone, follow those orders, as the deadliest part of a hurricane is the storm surge. It does not take a category 5 -- or even a 3 -- to create a storm surge. Though a storm may not be heading straight for the Suncoast, it could still bring a deadly storm surge. You can build a house to withstand strong winds but when it comes to the surge, there is little that can be done.