Although the Atlantic hurricane season is well underway, meteorologists have predicted that the 2015 season is expected to be a rather uneventful one. Much like the 2014 hurricane season, which was abnormally quiet and saw very little storms on our side of the globe, the 2015 projections are likely to be strikingly similar. In fact, NOAA predicts that the June-November period has a 70% chance of being below average with an estimated 11 named storms, consisting of 3-6 hurricanes, 2 of which could potentially be major ones. But before Miami residents rejoice over another lucky year, they should take into account the fact that a quiet Atlantic hurricane season doesn’t always spell out a lack of danger. Historically speaking, it could actually mean quite the opposite.
When hurricanes are formed in the Atlantic basin, they are assigned a unique name and a category of 1-5, which correlates with the estimate of potential property damage that could occur. Any storm above a category 3 is considered to be a major one in which extensive preparation should be taken. However, knowing this, many people tend to overlook “smaller” storms or warnings of storms that aren’t expected to pose any real threat. Therein lies the problem with hurricane season, because many forget to take the necessary precautions even if the threat level is seemingly absent.
For this exact reason, storm prep should be executed regardless of the seasonal activity predicted. After all, it only takes one big storm to make a significant impact on a community, which can occur in any type of Atlantic season imaginable. Hurricane Andrew, which occurred in 1992 in South Florida, is a perfect example of this because Miami residents will recall that exact year was said to be a “quiet hurricane season.” This clearly wasn’t the case since the hurricane left a large portion of the state devastated for years to come.
Although hurricane seasons are widely unpredictable, it’s recommended to prepare for any potential situation that could occur. That’s why every storm plan should include the following:
• Non-perishable stored goods
• An ample supply of water
• A battery operated radio
• An emergency evacuation plan for family members and pets
• A backup generator to maintain power before, during and after storms
• A first aid kit