It's Hurricane Season.
This is a good time to review and activate Family Emergency Plans. FEMA's website called Ready America has extensive information about emergency preparedness. Additional information on preparation is available from the American Red Cross.
For current rainfall and flood information, go to the Harris County Flood Warning System.
The City of Webster maintains a WeatherBug site with current Webster information
The City of Webster has an emergency notification service that enables officials to disseminate messages to thousands of residents and businesses rapidly through a single telephone call, text message, or email. Sign up for Swift 911 notifications via recorded messages, email, and cellular text messages.
Special Healthcare or Transportation Needs? Call 2-1-1
For those with special healthcare or transportation needs, call 2-1-1 before a storm is threatening or visit the 2-1-1 website to register online. Operators will register those requiring special assistance. As a storm approaches, an assessment and evacuation plan will be determined.
Emergency Supply Kit
A key component of any Family Plan is a well-stocked Emergency Kit. Keep enough supplies in your home to shelter in place, for at least three days. If possible, keep these materials in an easily accessible, separate container or special cupboard. You should indicate to your household members that these supplies are for emergencies only. Check expiration dates of food and update your kits when you change your clock during daylight-saving times. During hurricane season keep at least half a tank of gas in your car at all times. Rethink your needs every year and update your kit as your household changes.
Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale
The Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale is a 1 to 5 rating based on a hurricane's sustained wind speed. This scale estimates potential property damage. Hurricanes reaching Category 3 and higher are considered major hurricanes because of their potential for significant loss of life and damage. Category 1 and 2 storms are still dangerous, however, and require preventative measures. In the western North Pacific, the term "super typhoon" is used for tropical cyclones with sustained winds exceeding 150 miles per hour.
In coastal and low-lying areas, storm surge is often the greatest threat to life and property during a tropical storm or hurricane. Using advanced computer models NOAA is able to simulate weather conditions, predict storm surge, and give early warnings when evacuation is required. Complete information about storm surge is available on NOAA's storm surge website.
The National Hurricane Center also has information about storm surge, including photos of past events and an animation of the devastating effect of storm surge.
Hurricanes are extremely unpredictable and can become much more dangerous in a matter of hours. Local officials will make mandatory evacuation decisions before a storm makes landfall. Evacuations will be based on zip codes and coastal zones.
You may evacuate to any city you choose, there are no mandatory routes you must take when evacuating. Understand that contra-flow lanes may be open on IH-45 Route (PDF), I-10 Route (PDF), US-290 Route (PDF) and US-59 Route (PDF) prior to the arrival of gale force winds. Other State designated evacuation routes include: SH-36, SH-288, SH-6, and SH-146.
Plan your evacuation routes carefully, have more than one route planned, and remember that contra-flow lanes have priority over all routes. If you choose to take an alternate route, essential services such as food, fuel, breakdown assistance, etc. are not guaranteed.
Be prepared to leave immediately. IT IS NOT SAFE TO WAIT!
Monitor conditions in your area or throughout the storm track, prepare your family and home, find help and let others know you are safe even if the power is out – a must have for anyone who lives in an area where a hurricane may strike or has loved ones who do.