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Before A Hurricane Hits

Develop an emergency plan

(HealthDayNews) -- There is usually plenty of advance warning before a hurricane hits. To help you stay safe, the United Way of Miami-Dade County (Florida) offers this advice:

Before the storm:

  • Stay informed by listening to weather reports.
  • Know the difference between a hurricane watch -- issued when there's a threat of a hurricane within 36 hours -- and a hurricane warning -- issued when the storm is expected to strike an area within 24 hours or less.
  • Know the hurricane categories: category 1 is less powerful than category 5.
  • Learn the location of the nearest shelter.
  • Trim trees and clean up loose debris.
  • Stock up on important supplies, such as plywood, non-perishable foods, water, flashlights, battery-operated radio, first-aid kit, and essential medicines.
  • Develop an emergency communication plan. Make an out-of-state relative or friend the family contact.
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