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Don’t wait. FEMA administrator says time to prep for hurricane season is now

From the International Space Station Astronaut Chris Cassidy took this photo of Hurricane Laura as it neared the Gulf coast on Aug. 26, 2020 at 3:27 p.m. EDT. Credit: NASA/Chris Cassidy

With hurricane season fast approaching, the administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency is urging Floridians to start making disaster plans now.

The Atlantic Hurricane season starts in June, but leaders at FEMA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration speaking at the National Hurricane Conference in Orlando say now is the time to start making preparations.

“Know your risk,” says FEMA director Deanne Criswell. “Take the time today to understand what your risk is. Know what you’re going to do when you get a notification that you’re going to have to evacuate. Where are you going to go?”

Florida has seen a surge of new residents in recent years — people who might not have experienced hurricanes before.

“If you have not been in that situation before, there are a lot of resources out there,” like Ready.Gov, she says. “There’s a lot of information about the things that you can do to build that plan to protect your family.”

Knowing where you’ll go if you need to evacuate, how you’ll communicate with family, and establishing a long-term plan in case you can’t get back to your home are important preparations to make, she says.

Scientists at Colorado State University say this could be another above average hurricane season with a forecasted 19 storms. Of those storms, CSU scientists say nine could be named storms and four could be category three storms or stronger.

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Brendan Byrne

About Brendan Byrne

Space Reporter and 'Are We There Yet?' Host

Brendan covers space news for WMFE, everything from rocket launches to the latest scientific discoveries in our universe. He hosts WMFE's weekly radio show and podcast "Are We There Yet?" which explores human space exploration. Brendan is a native Floridian, born and raised in Broward County. He moved to ... Read Full Bio »