Florida Division of Emergency Management announces Florida Hurricane Preparedness Week

Press release from Florida Division of Emergency Management

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Governor Ron DeSantis has proclaimed the first week of May as Florida Hurricane Preparedness Week in coordination with the National Weather Service Hurricane Preparedness Week. The Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM) urges all residents to take time now to make family and business emergency plans and stock disaster supply kits ahead of the 2023 Atlantic Hurricane Season.

“With less than one month until the start of the 2023 season, the time to prepare is now,” said FDEM Executive Director Kevin Guthrie. “After a very active 2022 season, and the devastating impacts from Hurricanes Ian and Nicole, I encourage all residents and visitors to know your area’s risks, determine if you live in a flood-prone area, and create a comprehensive family evacuation plan.”

On average there are fourteen named tropical storms each year in the Atlantic basin, seven of which strengthen into hurricanes with three becoming a Category 3 or higher. However, FDEM stresses the importance of not focusing on the projected number of storms for the 2023 season as it only takes one storm to produce long-lasting impacts.

National Preparedness Week and Florida Preparedness Week are observed every May to educate families and communities on the importance of disaster mitigation, preparedness, and response. More information on National Preparedness Month can be found here.

FDEM Recommended Preparedness Measures:

  • Make a Plan – Every household should have a disaster plan specific to the needs of everyone in their household, including consideration of children, pets, and seniors. Visit FloridaDisaster.org/PlanPrepare for more information and to Make a Plan.
  • Have Multiple Ways to Receive Weather Alerts – Every household should have multiple ways to receive weather alerts and follow all directions from local officials. Residents are encouraged to have a battery-operated or hand-crank weather radio to ensure they can continue to receive alerts from the National Weather Service in the event of power outages or damaged cell towers.
  • Know Your Zone, Know Your Home – It’s important for residents to know if they live in an evacuation zone, a low-lying, flood-prone area, a mobile home or an unsafe structure during hurricane season. It is also very important for residents to know their home and its ability to withstand strong winds and heavy rain. This information will help residents better understand orders from local officials during a storm. Visit FloridaDisaster.org/Know for more information and to find your zone. 
  • Build a Kit – Take the time now to take inventory and identify items your family may need on hand during or after a Hurricane. For a complete checklist, click here. 
  • Keep Gas Tanks Half Full – Residents should keep their vehicle’s gas tanks at least half full during hurricane season to ensure they have enough fuel to evacuate as soon as possible without worrying about long lines at gas stations and to avoid gas shortages prior to a storm. For Floridians with electric vehicles, it’s recommended that the battery be maintained between 50% – 80% capacity at all times, depending on the type of vehicle and what the vehicle’s manual recommends. Visit FloridaDisaster.org/HalfwayFull for more information.

The 2023 Atlantic Hurricane Season begins June 1 and runs through November 30, with the historical peak beginning in September. Residents and visitors are reminded that it only takes one storm to impact a community and that preparations should be made ahead of time. Visit FloridaDisaster.org for emergency information and to learn more about Florida hazards.

For weather updates and safety tips, follow the Division on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter @FLSERT.