Florida Hurricane Season 2024: Complete Guide

This Florida Hurricane Season 2024 guide will help you prepare for the storm season ahead of us. Meteorologists and forecasters are worried that the 2024 hurricane season could be devastating. Floridians witnessed two powerful hurricanes, Ian and Idalia, in the 2022 and 2023 hurricane seasons. Florida can witness another powerful storm in 2024, so preparation is always essential. Below is a Florida Hurricane season 2024 complete guide.

florida hurricanes

When Does Hurricane Season Start in Florida?

Hurricane season begins on June 1 and runs until November 30. The peak of the season starts in September. During the Florida 2024 hurricane season, Tropical Depressions, Tropical Storms, and Hurricanes can occur. Hurricanes can fall into five categories. Category one and two hurricanes can damage infrastructure and the environment. Category three through five hurricanes are deemed “major hurricanes,” which can cause catastrophic damage.

When category four or five hurricanes hit a region, the affected area could be uninhabitable for weeks or months. High winds are responsible for much of an area’s damage during a storm. However, other factors, such as storm surge and flooding, can have disastrous effects on the impacted area. For example, when Hurricane Ian hit Southwest Florida, the storm surge was the highest ever recorded in 150 years. Flooding caused billions in damage.

Predictions for Florida 2024 Hurricane Season

Meteorologists and researchers have somber news for the 2024 Florida hurricane season. The season is expected to be highly active. AccuWeather predicts a dangerous season that could potentially break records.  Meteorologists are expecting the formation of La Niña this summer, which means future updates and warmer ocean temperatures and bad news for Florida residents. La Niña can intensify storms and cause a “supercharged season.”

waves during florida hurricane season

Colorado State University’s top forecasters also predict an intense 2024 Florida hurricane season. We have not had serious hurricanes here on the Treasure Coast since the mid-2000s, so this is something to keep an eye on. Even with the Hutchinson Island barrier that offers increased protection, wind, flooding, and storm surge can be dangerous.

Their aggressive forecast includes the highest number of storms ever predicted by the team: 23 storms and five major hurricanes. The State of Florida’s Division of Emergency Management is aware of the forecast and is actively preparing for the season. However, locals must also prepare; the best time to prepare for the Florida 2024 hurricane season is now.

Four Things You Should Have in Your Home for Hurricane Season

1. Three-Day Supply of Food

FEMA recommends a three-day supply of nonperishable food, which will vary based on the number of people in your household. There should be one gallon of water per person. FEMA advises storing a three-day supply of water. The agency also recommends increasing the water supply for people who are sick, pregnant, or live in hotter climates. Floridians should store more water due to the warmer climate.  When choosing foods for your emergency supply, aim for nutrient-dense foods, such as canned vegetables, dried fruits, and lentils. However, you should also have your favorite snacks and other comfort foods.

2. Flashlights and Batteries

A severe storm can knock out power for days or even weeks, making light a valuable resource. A minimum of two flashlights will help you provide some light to your household if the power goes out. Having extra batteries on hand for flashlights, radios, and other electronic devices is helpful.

first aid kit

3. First Aid Kit

Every home should have a first aid kit. The kit should contain all of the essentials needed to treat minor wounds. Injuries are unlikely to occur during a less powerful storm, but if they do, you’ll have the proper bandages and equipment to treat wounds and burns.

4. Radio

Communication is essential during emergencies. Knowing what local authorities have advised is critical. Most people use TV, social media, and phones to stay updated about hurricane information. A battery-operated radio is the next best alternative if a power outage affects communication.

Three Things to Consider During Florida Hurricane Season 2024

Many Floridians have become adept at preparing for the worst. However, there are a few things that people should keep in mind for hurricane preparedness. Below are a few things to consider:

1. Keep Important Records and Documents Safe

Vital family records and documents should be placed in a safe location, such as a safe deposit box. Documents that should be stored carefully include social security cards, birth certificates, marriage certificates, immunization records, insurance policies, wills, and deeds. These items would be difficult and time-consuming to obtain if lost or damaged. Other deeply sentimental items like diplomas, gifts from loved ones, and jewelry that would be devastating if lost should be stored in a safe place.

safe deposit box

2. Check Your Insurance Policies

Checking your insurance policies can give you peace of mind. Look over your insurance documents or review the policy online to ensure the policy is currently updated and covers storm damage. If you’re unsure about the state of your policy, call your insurance company and get more information.

In addition to calling the insurance company, make an inventory of your possessions, especially the things that are important to you. A video recording of the items in your home can help with insurance reimbursement claims if loss or damage occurs.

3. Have a Good Support Network

Family, friends, neighbors, and coworkers can all create a strong support system that’s helpful in an emergency. You should also provide a trusted family member with a key to your home if you need to evacuate. If they can access your home, they can check your place for damage if you’ve evacuated and haven’t yet returned.

If your home suffers damage or flooding, it can be helpful to have a neighbor, family member, or friend whose home you can visit for temporary relief and shelter. It’s also important to know how you and your family members plan to keep in contact during a hurricane. Clear evacuation plans can help you and your family stay informed and prevent confusion during a storm.

What Should You Put in Your Hurricane Supply Kit?

A disaster supply kit, or go-bag, has everything you need to manage an emergency. Your disaster supply kit may look different from others because it should be personalized to fit your needs and lifestyle.

Medication

You should have at least a two-week supply of prescription medication. Florida law makes it easy for people to get additional medication during a hurricane warning. The law allows you to obtain a 30-day prescription medication refill even if you recently refilled it, provided you live in a county under a hurricane warning. Non-prescription medications like aspirin, pain relievers, and cold and allergy medication should also be a part of your disaster supply kit.

emergency medication kit

Personal Care Items

Personal care items should include soap, shampoo, hand sanitizer, toothpaste, toothbrush, toilet paper, combs, deodorant, sunscreen, lip balm, razors, shaving cream, insect repellent, and feminine supplies. These items will help you maintain your hygiene during an emergency.

It’s also wise to have items that will comfort you, your household, and your pets. For example, you may want to have books, toys, cards, puzzles, and other forms of entertainment. Your disaster supply kit should be compatible with evacuation and sheltering in place.

Keeping Pets Safe During Florida Hurricane Season 2024

Your disaster plan and emergency preparedness should include any pets in the home. When evacuating your home, please consider your furry friend. Pets shouldn’t be left behind. It can be dangerous for pets left behind during storms, especially if structural or flooding damage occurs. Finding a shelter for your animals could take time, so prepare early.

Pet owners can check with local shelters and pet boarding facilities to determine if they can provide foster care for pets. Additionally, check with friends, relatives, and others outside the affected hurricane zone to see if they can provide a temporary pet shelter during an evacuation. It’s also wise to keep a list of pet-friendly hotels near you but outside your potential evacuated area.

hurricane pet shelter

Pet owners should also have a disaster supply kit for their pets. The kit should include enough food, water, and treats for at least a week or two. Immunization records and medications are also necessary. If the pet has a favorite toy, it should also be included in the disaster supply kit. The pet should also have a collar with identification tags. Sometimes, pets get separated from their owners during an emergency. Taking a photo with your pet can help validate pet ownership if separation occurs.

How to Protect Your Home During a Hurricane

You can take certain precautions to keep your home safe during a hurricane. Below are a few tips for protecting your property during the Florida 2024 hurricane season:

Trim Tree Branches and Bring Loose Items Inside

Broken branches can damage your home or power lines in the area. Trimming branches so trees are healthy and strong can minimize the risk of damage to your home. Patio furniture, bikes, toys, plant pots, and other loose items that can blow in the wind and cause damage or injuries should be brought inside.

Put Your Car in the Garage

The garage is the safest place for your vehicle during a hurricane. Parking your car inside a garage can decrease the risk of vehicle damage.

Board Up Windows and Sill Cracks in the Home

Many homes in Florida have hurricane-impact windows. However, boarding up windows is still a wise precaution to prevent shattered glass and other damage to the house.

What Should I Do if the Power Goes Out?

If the power goes out, don’t panic. It’s common for power outages to occur during a hurricane. High winds can easily knock down power lines and cause disruptions to the power grid. If you lose electricity, there are a few things that you should keep in mind.

flashlights

During a Hurricane, Use Flashlights, Not Candles

Flashlights are the safer alternative, as candles can potentially start fires. If you use candles, always stay near them and keep them away from anything that could catch fire.  A fire extinguisher is also very helpful to have in the home.

How to Safely Use a Generator During a Hurricane

If you lose power, you may want to use a generator. Generators can be incredibly helpful if you’ve lost electricity. However, there are safety precautions that you should take when using a generator.

Only use a generator if you have a carbon monoxide alarm. Some generators emit carbon monoxide and should not be used indoors. Breathing in carbon monoxide can be incredibly dangerous to your health. Next, inspect and maintain your generator. Look for cracks, leaks, and any damage that could jeopardize its function.

home generator for hurricanes

Disconnect the house from your regular power source before plugging the generator into a household circuit. Failing to disconnect your regular source of power could have disastrous consequences. The electrical current could reverse through the circuit to the power grid and cause power lines near you to increase to a dangerous voltage. Failing to disconnect could potentially electrocute people in neighboring homes or utility workers.

A generator should never be used inside. It should be outside and at least 20 feet from doors, windows, and vents. One particularly dangerous situation is when people put generators in the garage and open the garage door. They believe that an open garage will offset hazardous fumes from the generator. However, the generator can drive exhaust into the home, which creates a potentially deadly situation for those inside.

Generators must remain dry and not submerged in water to avoid electrocution. Finally, always let the generator cool down before adding more fuel. This will prevent potential fires.

What Happens if I Need to Evacuate?

When you are told to evacuate, you should leave immediately. Many people delay evacuation plans until the last moment. In an emergency, every minute counts. Sometimes evacuation orders occur at the last minute, leaving little time for residents to gather their thoughts and belongings and seek shelter elsewhere. Create an evacuation plan that includes the routes you would take to get out of the area and where you would stay once you arrive at your destination.

Many Floridians choose to stay in their homes despite evacuation orders. People decide to stay for many reasons, such as disabilities, financial circumstances, or other personal reasons. If you remain home despite evacuation orders, it’s wise to make extra preparations for the risks of failing to evacuate. For example, emergency services are not operating at optimal capacity in evacuation zones, which means that people who stay will have to make efforts to be completely self-sufficient during the storm.

florida hurricane evacuation sign

When sheltering in place, always remain inside your home. Stay away from windows, glass, and exterior doors. If you feel the home shaking during the storm, it could be caused by high winds or a tornado. In this case, you should take refuge in a small room without windows or an interior hallway. Don’t leave your home until local officials have lifted evacuation orders, the storm is over, and you know it’s safe to move about the area.

If you evacuate, equip your car with an emergency supply kit, including a map, a blanket, a phone charger, a flashlight with batteries, jumper cables, and at least one spare tire.

Prepare for the 2024 Florida Hurricane Season Before it Starts

Don’t let a hurricane catch you unexpectedly. Pay attention to the weather forecasts, especially during hurricane season. It takes time for hurricanes to reach land, and meteorologists can usually give a few days’ notice that a hurricane is headed in your direction. It’s important to start planning for hurricane season before it begins. Preparing for the 2024 Florida hurricane season can be daunting, but it’s a necessary precaution to stay safe before a hurricane arrives.

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