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MEMA Home > Programs> Communication> News > Hurricane Awareness: Disaster Resilience

Hurricane Awareness: Disaster Resilience

Hurricane Floyd - 1999 (Image courtesy National Hurricane Center)


July 26, 2009


Preventing the loss of life and minimizing the damage to property from hurricanes are responsibilities that are shared by all of us. If we plan and take steps ahead, we become more resilient as families and communities, better able to bounce back if disaster strikes.

Throughout this week, information has been provided regarding actions that you can take based on specific hurricane hazards. The most important thing that you can do is to be informed and prepared. Becoming disaster resilient includes both being prepared as well as reducing risk (also called mitigation).

Disaster planning should include:

One of the most important decisions you will have to make is "Should I evacuate?"

If you are asked to evacuate, you should do so without delay. You may not get help later if you wait too long, or you might put a responder at risk trying to help you in the height of the storm.

But unless you live in a coastal or low-lying area, an area that floods frequently, or in manufactured housing, it is unlikely that emergency managers will ask you to evacuate. That means that it is important for you and your family to have a plan that makes you as safe as possible in your home.

Disaster preparedness includes modifying your home to strengthen it against storms so that you can be as safe as possible. It also includes having the supplies on hand to weather the storm. The suggestions provided here are only guides. Decide what makes sense for you in your disaster planning.

  • Develop a family plan. Your family's plan should be based on your vulnerability to the hurricane hazards. You should keep a written plan and share your plan with other friends or family.
  • Creating a Create a disaster supply kit. There are certain items you need to have regardless of where you ride out a hurricane. The disaster supply kit is a useful tool when you evacuate as well as making you as safe as possible in your home.
  • Secure your home. There are things that you can do to make your home more secure and able to withstand stronger storms. Visit the Institute for Business and Home Safety at for more information.
  • Find out more. Ask your local officials about your communities plans, and what areas are vulnerable to flooding and other hazards. Then come back to our Maine Prepares web site and get started building your family's emergency plan today.
  • Stay informed during the storm. Weather conditions change rapidly. Make sure you have a battery or crank powered radio in your disaster kit. A NOAA Weather Radio is even better.

This and all the Hurricane Awareness information was prepared in partnership with the National Weather Service Forecast Offices in Gray and Caribou, Maine.)

For additional information about hurricanes and hurricane safety, visit the National Hurricane Center's web site at:

Also visit National Weather Service Caribou at and Gray at



Beth Barton or Lynette Miller


Last update: 07/20/10