Hurricane Preparation Guide 2016


"Preventing the loss of life and minimizing the damage to property from hurricanes are responsibilities that are shared by all." The most important thing that you can do is to be informed and prepared. Disaster prevention includes both being prepared as well as reducing damages. 

What is the difference between a Hurricane Watch and a Hurricane Warning? 
HURRICANE WATCH—Hurricane conditions are possible in the specified area of the Watch, usually within 36 hours. 
HURRICANE WARNING—Hurricane conditions are expected in the specified area of the Warning, usually within 24 hours. 


  • Discuss the type of hazards that could affect your family. Know your home's vulnerability to storm surge, flooding and wind. Locate a safe room or the safest areas in your home for each hurricane hazard. In certain circumstances, the safest areas may not be your home but within your community. 
  • Determine escape routes from your home and places to meet. These should be measured in tens of miles rather than hundreds of miles. 
  • Have an out-of-state friend as a family contact so all your family members have a single point of contact. 
  • Make a plan now for what to do with your pets if you need to evacuate. 
  • Post emergency telephone numbers by your phones and make sure your children know how and when to call 911. 
  • Check your insurance coverage - flood damage is not usually covered by homeowners insurance. 
  • Stock non-perishable emergency supplies and a Disaster Supply Kit. 
  • Use a NOAA weather radio. Remember to replace its battery every 6 months as you do with your smoke detectors. 
  • Download a helpful app like the American Red Cross Hurricane App it's free. With this app you can select a safe meeting poin tor your evacuation location, pick a route and share it with your family. It also has tools and information for staying safe before and after a storm hits. 


  • Water - at least 1 gallon daily per person for 3 to 7 days 
  • Food - at least enough for 3 to 7 days 
  • non-perishable packaged or canned food / juices 
  • foods for infants or the elderly 
  • snack foods 
  • non-electric can opener 
  • cooking tools / fuel 
  • paper plates / plastic utensils 
  • Blankets / Pillows, etc. 
  • Clothing - seasonal / rain gear/ sturdy shoes 
  • First Aid Kit / Medicines / Prescription Drugs Special Items - for babies and the elderly 
  • Toiletries / Hygiene items / Moisture wipes 
  • Flashlight / Batteries 
  • Radio - Battery operated and NOAA weather radio 
  • Telephones - Fully charged cell phone with extra battery and a traditional (not cordless) telephone set0
  • Cash (with some small bills) and Credit Cards - Banks and ATMs may not be available for extended periods 
  • Keys 
  • Toys, Books, and Games 
  • Important Documents in a waterproof container or watertight resealable plastic bag—insurance, medical records, bank account numbers, Social Security card, etc. 
  • Tools - keep a set with you during the storm 
  • Vehicle Fuel Tanks Filled 

Pet Care Items 

  • proper identification / immunization records / medications 
  • ample supply of food and water 
  • a carrier or cage 
  • muzzle and leash 


Develop a family hurricane preparedness plan before an actual storm threatens your area. If your family hurricane preparedness plan includes evacuation to a safer location for any reason then it is important to consider the following points: 

If ordered to evacuate, do not wait or delay your departure. If possible, leave before local officials issue an evacuation order for your area. Even a slight delay in starting your evacuation will result in significantly longer travel times as traffic congestion worsens.

Select an evacuation destination that is nearest to your home, preferably in the same county, or at least minimize the distance over which you must travel in order to reach your intended shelter location. In choosing your destination, keep in mind that the hotels and other sheltering options in most inland metropolitan areas are likely to be filled very quickly in a large, multi-county hurricane evacuation event. 

If you decide to evacuate to another county or region, be prepared to wait in traffic. The large number of people in this state who must evacuate during a hurricane will probably cause massive delays and major congestion along most designated evacuation routes; the larger the storm, the greater the probability of traffic jams and extended travel times. If possible, make arrangements to stay with the friend or relative who resides closest to your home and who will not have to evacuate. Discuss with your intended host the details of your family evacuation plan well before the beginning of the hurricane season.

If a hotel or motel is your final intended destination during an evacuation, make reservations before you leave. Most hotel and motels will fill quickly once evacuations begin. The longer you wait to make reservations, even if an official evacuation order has not been issued for your area or county, the less likely you are to find hotel/ motel room vacancies, especially along interstate highways and in major metropolitan areas. 

If you are unable to stay with friends or family and no hotels/motels rooms are available, then as a last resort go to a shelter. Make sure that you fill up your car with gas, before you leave. Remember, shelters are not designed for comfort and do not usually accept pets. Bring your disaster supply kit with you to the shelter. Find pet friendly hotels and motels. 



The Greater Palm Beach Area Chapter of the American Red Cross will operate shelters when needed. Not all shelters open at once. The Red Cross requests that you listen to local media or call the Emergency Operations Center (561) 712-6400. The Red Cross non-emergency phone number is (561) 833-7711. Don't forget to downlod the Hurricane app for a great resource tool.



Make sure that your pets are current on their vaccinations. Pet shelters may require proof of vaccines. Have a current photograph. Keep a collar with identification on your pet and have a leash on hand to control your pet. Have a properly-sized pet carrier for each animal - carriers should be large enough for the animal to stand and turn around. 

Plan your evacuation strategy and don't forget your pet! Specialized pet shelters, animal control shelters, veterinary clinics and friends and relatives out of harm's way are ALL potential refuges for your pet during a disaster.  If you plan to shelter your pet - work it into your evacuation route planning. 


Animals brought to a pet shelter are required to have: Proper identification collar and rabies tag, proper identification on all belongings, a carrier or cage, a leash, an ample supply of food, water and food bowls, any necessary medications, specific care instructions and newspapers or trash bags for clean-up. Bring pets indoor well in advance of a storm - reassure them and remain calm. Pet shelters will be filled on first come, first served basis. Call ahead and determine availability. 


Walk pets on a leash until they become re-oriented to their home - often familiar scents and landmarks may be altered and pets could easily be confused and become lost. Also, downed power lines, reptiles brought in with high water and debris can all pose a threat for animals after a disaster. If pets cannot be found after a disaster, contact the PBC animal care and control office at (561) 233-1200 to find out where lost animals can be recovered. Bring along a picture of your pet if possible. After a disaster, animals can become aggressive or defensive - monitor their behavior. 


We have noticed that some residents have started to prepare for the hurricane season by thinning out branches and removing dead limbs. We would like to thank those residents that have taken the time to prepare ahead of time rather than waiting to do the task before an approaching storm. 

You should not attempt to trim trees or hedges once a storm threatens our area. Waste Management will not have time to remove vegetation placed at curbside prior to the storm’s arrival. If the vegetation is not picked up, the loose branches could become projectiles and cause additional damage. There are collection deadlines imposed by the Solid Waste Authority that Waste Management must follow. The Solid Waste Authority establishes the deadlines to allow them time to prepare their facilities for an approaching storm. No collections will be made after this deadline. If a hurricane is approaching our area, listen to your favorite local news station to obtain current information on debris collections prior to the storm. We want to remind you that although the Town has a contract with Waste Management that includes a weekly vegetation pick up after a declared disaster, the pickup of vegetation debris placed at curbside is not included in this contract. Vegetative debris generated by hurricanes or other disasters will be removed under a separate contract with a different contractor at an additional cost to the Town. 

If you plan to hire a company or individual to trim your trees and shrubs, make sure that the company or individual is registered with the Town. In addition, Town Code Sec. 42-35 (b) states that the company or business entity is required to remove the debris from the town. 

Remember – debris from the trees and shrubs must be cut into lengths of 4 feet or less with no single piece weighing more than 50 pounds. Vegetation cannot be placed at the roadside prior to Saturday morning. When placing vegetation at the roadside, please make sure that the vegetation does not cover any storm drains or protrude into roadways.