Hurricane season is almost here… Are you ready?

Crewmembers of Coast Guard Station Atlantic City board the station's windows in preparation for Hurricane Irene in August 2011. The station's crew relocated in preparation to respond to emergencies after the storm passed. U.S. Coast Guard photo.

Crewmembers of Coast Guard Station Atlantic City board the station's windows in preparation for Hurricane Irene in August 2011. The station's crew relocated in preparation to respond to emergencies after the storm passed. U.S. Coast Guard photo.

While the Atlantic hurricane season doesn’t officially start until June 1, scientists at the Climate Prediction Center are predicting moderate chances for a tropical depression or a storm to form in the Caribbean during the next two weeks. The chances of an early storm are a perfect reminder to start disaster preparations in your home and local community.

When it comes to hurricane response and preparedness the Coast Guard works closely with local, state and federal agencies like the Federal Emergency Management Agency and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. But there is also another important member of our hurricane preparedness team; that important member is you!

Storm flags fly at Coast Guard Station Chatham to warn the general public of dangerous storm conditions associated with Hurricane Irene in August 2011.  U.S. Coast Guard photo by Chief Petty Officer Jeff Hall.

Storm flags fly at Coast Guard Station Chatham to warn the general public of dangerous storm conditions associated with Hurricane Irene in August 2011. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Chief Petty Officer Jeff Hall.

The most valuable thing you can do is to stay informed and be prepared. If you are just starting out in learning about disaster preparedness, take a look at Ready.gov.

Some of their top tips include:

• Build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan. Have an out-of-state friend as a family contact so family members have a single point of contact.
• Discuss the type of hazards that could affect your family. Know your home’s vulnerability to storm surge, flooding and wind.
• Locate a safe room or the safest areas in your home for each hurricane hazard. In certain circumstances the safest areas may not be your home but within your community.
• Learn community hurricane evacuation routes and how to find higher ground. Determine places to meet and how you would get there if you needed to evacuate. Also, don’t forget to make a plan for what to do with your pets if you need to evacuate.
• Use a NOAA weather radio. Remember to replace its battery every 6 months, as you do with your smoke detectors.
• Check your insurance coverage – flood damage is not usually covered by homeowners insurance. A great resource is the National Flood Insurance Program.

Click the above graphic to be taken to the "Pledge to Prepare."

Click the above graphic to be taken to the "Pledge to Prepare."

With your family and community prepared, don’t forget about getting information on the weather itself! Some of the most up-to-date information on hurricanes comes from NOAA. NOAA’S National Hurricane Center helps you follow storms, determine when and where they will make landfall and will even send you alerts and warnings if you’re in harm’s way.

Also, both NOAA and FEMA offer social media tools allowing you to access critical information before, during and after a hurricane or storm. So don’t forget to plug in and download these important apps!

Lastly, friends, neighbors and colleagues are more likely to prepare for disasters when they see those around them prepare, so inspire them to act by being an example yourself. The first step you can take is to “Pledge to Prepare.” The resources you will receive once doing so provide tools for making your family and community, safer, more resilient and better prepared.

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  • skip

    COGRATS to O1 Matt Stroebel and the rest of the GRAD CLASS. BRAZO ZULU !

  • Dochsc

    How many started in Class of 2012? How many we’re lost to grades? How many unable to cope with military life? We have done good in the past I now wonder if we are still able to keep quality officers out of the CGA! Or would we be best served with OCS / College? My vote is the USCGA Gives us good line officers, Well Done Class of 1212

  • LT S. M. Young

    Dochsc,

    You asked a few questions I don’t have the answer to, but I can help you answer your question about how many started out in the class. Just checked with Coast Guard Academy Public Affairs and their data shows 294 cadets were sworn in for the Class of 2012. 

    Thanks for reading and commenting!

    Very Respectfully,
    Lt. Stephanie Young
    Coast Guard Public Affairs

  • Jean Edington

    A Very proud Gran and Granpa all the way from South Africa,   Christopher Ian Edington,  well done our darling child, so proud of you. You graduate today. Wish we were there in this your finest hour…so far…… Congrats to the rest of the Class

  • Timyankee58

    sweet

  • Once Commissioned

    This was painful to read.
    While the other Service Academies are readying their leaders for combat roles, CGA is touting the first female this or that and the first gay-straight alliance?!?

    It’s embarassing to read.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/C3YKIP3575VXU63MEMGKBCB4PQ jemmajolie

    It is surprising that anyone who was Once Commissioned would be embarrassed by the advances in the Coast Guard and the Academy.  The first female “this or that” in this case, the career of Rear Admiral Stosz, is very impressive, even in the only branch of the military in which females are not restricted from any assigments or jobs.  Additionally, the USCGA is setting the bar for integrating and accepting a federal mandate regarding gays in the military.  The President, whether or not we agree with him, is still the Commander in Chief.  Another missed point is the CGA’s hosting and participation in the inaugural Arctic Conference.  I congratulate the Class of 2012 and the USCGA for continuing to turn out some of America’s finest leaders on a tight budget and in an evolving political climate.  Semper Paratus.

  • Carroll

    The company who took photos has not posted them, as far as my research has shown.  I was put on a list of people who are supposed to receive an email advising me that the photos are posted and we may purchase them.  So far, I have not gotten an email.  Anyone know what is happening?

    Chris Carroll
    Mother, Abe Sifakis

  • Carroll

    Touting the first female leader of the Academy and accepting innate differences shows that the Coast Guard values a society with liberty and justice for all. Semper Paratus.