These 5 Steps Will Prepare You For Hurricane Season

As Hurricane Preparedness Week concludes, the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) is making its final pitch to Texans to begin making plans to protect themselves and their families in advance of the 2017 hurricane season.

The 2017 Atlantic hurricane season begins June 1 and continues through Nov. 30.

Here are five measures you can take now to prepare for potential storms:

--Assemble an emergency kit. It should include essential documents, supplies and provisions.

--Review hurricane evacuation maps, and select a route for you and your family.

--Plan how all family members and pets will evacuate safely.

--Consider any special needs for individuals with disabilities or the elderly.

--If you or someone you know might need assistance during a disaster, register for the State of Texas Emergency Assistance Registry (STEAR), a free registry that provides local emergency planners and responders with additional information about needs in their communities. To register, contact 2-1-1 Texas, the state’s free 24-hour helpline. No matter where you live in Texas, you can dial 2-1-1 or (877) 541-7905 for community resources.

Hurricanes can cause catastrophic damage to coastlines, and winds can vary from 74 to 157 miles per hour (or higher). In addition, hurricanes and tropical storms can also spawn tornadoes, create dangerous coastal water conditions, including storm surges along the coast, and cause extensive damage from flooding.

“The impending hurricane season presents the potential for powerful storms and dangerous conditions across the state that could endanger lives and cause extensive damage – something many Texans have already endured this year,” Gov. Greg Abbott said in statement.

All Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico coastal areas are subject to hurricanes or tropical storms. It is possible for a storm to severely affect Texas -- even before or without making landfall in Texas. Additionally, the rainbands associated with a tropical system have a wide reach, so monitoring changing weather conditions during hurricane season is critically important.

 “Early preparation can be the difference between life and death when hurricanes or severe weather occur, and it is crucial for Texans to begin preparing for future storms now,” DPS Director Steven McCraw said. “DPS urges all Texans – not just residents living in coastal areas – to develop a hurricane plan and assemble an emergency kit in case of a disaster.”

For more information about hurricanes and how to prepare for the 2017 hurricane season, visit and

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