For the mid-Atlantic states, the time to get ready for Sandy is over. But it’s a slow moving storm, so those north of us here in the Washington DC area still have time to make emergency preparations. To that end, I’d recommend an immediate visit to Ready.gov, the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) disaster preparedness site.
Thankfully, hurricanes are a relatively infrequent phenomenon in our part of the country (at least direct hits by big storms). We’re a bit more used to snow storms and violent summer weather. So it’s useful—and perhaps a matter of life and death—to have a trustworthy source of information on dangerous tropical weather that you can actually understand.
In addition to a straightforward explanation of what hurricanes are and how they work, there are tabs listing what to do before, during and after a hurricane strikes, as well as resources for more information. You may need to scroll down to see these sections on laptops or smaller desktop displays. If you’re in Sandy’s path, find them, do them and print them so you’ll have them if (when) you lose power.
Here’s one thing I didn’t know before visiting Ready.gov: “…more people lost their lives from freshwater inland flooding associated with tropical cyclones than from any other weather hazard related to such storms.” That’s a clear warning, written in truly plain English, delivered with appropriate urgency.
Substance, clarity, and a distinct lack of hype. That’s what makes Ready.gov a go-to-source for great explanations—and a comfort to those of us who tend to worry more than we should.
PS: There’s more good information on preparing for, surviving, and recovering from Sandy at: