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Hurricane Season 2017


Important Information from FEMA on Hurricane Harvey

FEDERAL ASSISTANCE: Registering online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov, is the quickest way to register for FEMA assistance since the event will last several days and the full scope of damages may not be evident until the storm has passed. If you are unable to access the internet, you can also call at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362).

DISASTER RECOVERY CENTERS FOR INDIVIDUALS ARE OPEN

The center in Conroe is open at the former police department building at 700 Old Montgomery Road.

The center in Magnolia is  open at the Friendship Center at 31355 Friendship Drive.

The centers will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. as long as there appears to be a need, according to FEMA officials.

Below are different services that FEMA offers:

  • To report a missing child, contact the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children at 1-866-908-9570
  • To talk to a professional who can help you cope with emotional distress from the storm, call the @disasterdistressline at 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746
  • Visit the FEMA Social Hub for updates from official emergency management social media accounts.
  • Download the FEMA Mobile App to receive alerts from the National Weather Service, get safety and survival tips, customize your emergency checklist, find your local shelter, and upload your disaster photos to help first responders.

Visit www.ready.gov or www.listo.gov to learn more about preparing for hurricanes and severe weather.

CLICK HERE for the Disaster Recovery Center locator website.

CLICK HERE
for Texas' Hurricane Recovery website.


Recovery Help for Businesses

U.S. Small Business Administration and the Texas Gulf Coast Small Business Development Center Network today announced the opening of a business recovery center in Houston to provide a wide range of services to businesses impacted by Hurricane Harvey. SBA’s Houston District Director Tim Jeffcoat says “the center will provide a one-stop location for businesses to access a variety of specialized help. SBA customer service representatives and SBDC business advisors will be available to meet individually with each business owner."

No appointment is necessary. All services are provided free of charge.
 
Business Recovery Center
HARRIS COUNTY
University of Houston
Small Business Development Center Region Office
2302 Fannin St., Suite 200
Houston, TX  77002
Opens 9 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 3
Mondays – Fridays, 8 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Saturdays and Sundays, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Evacuations 
CLICK HERE
for mandatory & voluntary evacuation information

Closures
CLICK HERE for local school closings

Shelters
CLICK HERE 
for shelters around the area

Medical Resources 

CLICK HERE for emergency information for people with Medicare. Beneficiaries and their families can also call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227)

CLICK HERE for more up-to-date important information regarding Medicare & Medicaid services. 
Help Lines for Dialysis Services:
Texas ESRD Emergency Coalition (TEEC): 866-407-3773
Emergency Patient Line: 877-886-4435 or 972-503-3215

IRS Extension Relief
IRS Gives Tax Relief to Victims of Hurricane Harvey; Parts of Texas Now Eligible; Extension Filers Have Until Jan. 31 to File

Legal Resources 

The Woodlands Bar Association will offer free call in assistance for those who have consumer protection and other legal needs.

Call Times: September 11 and October 2 between 5-8 PM CT | Call Number: 281-645-6344

Other Resources
Red Cross' Hurricane Safety and Checklist

Center for Disease Control Hurricane Center

National Hurricane Center

Red Cross evacuation routes by county

http://www.txdot.gov/travel/hurricane.htm - Texas Department of Transportation evacuation routes

http://www.fema.gov/hazard/hurricane/index.shtm - FEMA hurricane website


Is your family prepared?

Hurricane Season runs from June 1st until November 30th.

Being prepared is important for every family and business. That means having a hurricane safety plan, because it is never if a hurricane will hit Texas, but when.

The hurricane experts at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration are predicting an above normal Atlantic hurricane season, with the formation of 11-17 named storms, including nine to nine hurricanes that could threaten the U.S. coastline or the Caribbean. Two to four hurricanes are expected to be "major" with sustained winds of at least 111 mph.

Expected warmer-than-average waters across the tropical Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea, weaker-than-average wind shear and a weak or nonexistent El Nino are expected to feed this hurricane season.

In an average Atlantic hurricane season. there are 12 named storms, six of which become hurricanes and two major hurricanes of category 3 or higher.

Storms are named when they are designated a tropical storm, with minimum sustained winds of 39 mph. When windspeeds reach 74 mph, the storm gains hurricane status.

How to Prepare

  • Inventory your property. The camera on your cell phone should get you what you need. Remember flood insurance will not go into effect until 30 days after your purchase.
  • Have all your important documents in a safe, easily moved container to take with you if you must evacuate.
  • Keep an emergency kit that includes the basics such as bottled water, a flashlight, batteries, first aid kit, pocket knife, candles, matches, sanitary supplies, etc…
  • Keep all trees and shrubbery trimmed. Winds in excess of 55 mph can blow large branches right off the tree and into your home.
  • Acquire a NOAA Weather Radio. One of the most important tools of the hurricane season, the NOAA radio broadcasts up-to-date weather reports, evacuation routes, and other pertinent information.
  • ALWAYS know you county’s evacuation plans and routes. Know what roads to use ahead of time so you will not be stuck in traffic during an evacuation.

Tips for Handling Insurance Claims after the Storm

Additional tips and helpful resources, such as claims hotlines, can be found on AIA’s Catastrophe Central web page HERE.  

AIA offers the following tips for homeowners and businesses following a hurricane:  

Contact their insurer(s) immediately after the storm to report all losses and damages.  Having your insurance information will speed things, so locate that as soon as possible.

Keep all recovery-related receipts including for meals and lodging as those might be covered under the “additional living expenses” portion of your insurance policy.

Businesses may also have coverage related to interruptions caused by the storm and should maintain records, receipts, etc.

Prepare a list of all damaged property (structure and contents), and if possible, photograph or video the damaged items.

Return claim forms as soon as possible to your insurer.

Work closely and stay in regular touch with your insurer.

When you rebuild, ask your contractor about adding features that would increase the building’s disaster-resistance.

Ask questions if you are unclear about your policy.

The Dangers of Hurricanes

Hurricanes have a number of jeopardizing effects when they make landfall, the most common being wind speed and flooding. Even a category one can have winds of 74-95 mph. More severe hurricanes can be slow moving, causing flash flooding in low-lying areas. Hurricanes can also produce tornadoes. The more intense the hurricane is, the more likely that it will produce multiple tornadoes. The most terrifying effect of a hurricane is the storm surge. A surging large dome of water, often 50-100 miles wide, can sweep along the coastline when a hurricane makes landfall. Coastline areas are most vulnerable to storm surges and should take the highest precautions.

What is the difference between a tropical depression, a tropical storm, and a hurricane?
A tropical depression is an organized system of clouds and thunderstorms with a defined
counterclockwise circulation and maximum sustained wind speeds of 38mph or less.

A tropical storm is an organized system of strong thunderstorms with a defined circulation
and maximum sustained wind speeds of 39-73mph. At this stage, the storm is now given a name.

A hurricane is an intense tropical weather system with a clear defined circulation and maximum
wind speeds of 74mph or higher.

2017 Atlantic Storm Names & Information
Arlene
Bret
Cindy
Don
Emily
Franklin
Gert
Harvey
Irma
Jose
Katia
Lee
Maria
Nate
Ophelia
Philippe
Rina
Sean
Tammy
Vince
Whitney

Important Hurricane Facts

  • All hurricanes begin in a warm, moist atmosphere over tropical ocean waters
  • A typical hurricane can dump 6-12 inches of rain across a region
  • The most violent winds and heaviest rains take place inside the eye wall, the ring of clouds and thunderstorms closely surrounding the eye of the storm
  • Every second, a large hurricane releases the energy of ten atomic bombs
  • Hurricanes are the only weather disasters that are given their own names
  • Slower moving hurricanes produce more rainfall and can cause more damage than faster moving, more powerful hurricanes
  • The storm surge of the hurricane produces more casualties than the wind or rain.
The Differences between Watches and Warnings

When your area has been issued a hurricane WATCH

  • Fuel all family vehicles in case of immediate evacuation
  • Store away all outdoor lawn furnishings, toys, or other loose objects around your property
  • Double check your food supplies just in case of prolonged power outings
  • Make sure you have sufficient bottled water on hand
  • Prepare to board up all windows/doors to minimize wind damage, if necessary
  • STAY TUNED to local weather broadcasts
When your area has been issued a hurricane WARNING
  • Complete preparation activities including supply check, boarding up windows, and storing outside objects
  • Stay inside at all times
  • If ordered to evacuate, DO IT
  • When evacuating, make sure you know where you are going, inform friends and family members, and if the area is going to be safe
  • If evacuating, disconnect all utilities such as small appliances, phones, gas lines, and electricity as an added precaution against damages
  • STAY TUNED to local weather broadcasts for up-to-date weather information, shelter areas, and emergency broadcasts