|SARASOTA COUNTY – The 2021 hurricane season officially ends Nov. 30, but Sarasota County Emergency Management encourages residents to stay vigilant and begin preparing early for the 2022 hurricane season.
Severe weather systems that come in the winter and early spring can bring tornadoes, lightning, high winds and severe thunderstorms.
“The end of hurricane season does not mean the end of severe weather. Floridians should always be prepared for severe storms and potential flooding,” said Sarasota County Emergency Management Chief Ed McCrane. “Emergencies do not wait for you to be prepared, so it’s important to be ready year-round.”
While Sarasota County did not experience a major hurricane this year, the area did see the effects of two tropical systems – Fred and Elsa. Sarasota County Emergency Management monitored the storms that appeared throughout the season while following lessons learned from previous storms and COVID-19 precautions.
Hurricane Elsa prompted the declaration of a local state of emergency, serving as a reminder of the importance of being prepared and having a plan ready.
“We don’t know what the next hurricane season will bring us, so begin your preparations now. This way, you will already have a good plan in place for the 2022 hurricane season,” said McCrane.
To prepare for next hurricane season, consider taking these steps and sharing this information with neighbors or friends who may have recently moved to Florida:
Create, review and agree on a plan for you and your family in case of an emergency.
Take inventory and verify expiration dates on food items in your emergency preparedness kits.
Consider donating non-perishable items that have not yet expired.
Add sanitizer, disinfectant and masks to emergency preparedness kits.
Sign up for emergency alerts at AlertSarasotaCounty.com.
Perform yard work such as trimming trees and making repairs to sheds or fences to help prevent potential damage in a storm event.
Install hurricane impact windows and doors or purchase hurricane shutters to harden and protect your home or business.
If you or someone you love requires use of a medical needs evacuation center or would need to be transported to one, update or add your information to the Medically Dependent Person online application or Transportation Dependent registration forms.
If you have sand bags, be sure to reuse them or dispose of them properly if they have come in contact with floodwater.
In addition, consider the following sandbag tips:
Save sandbags that have not come in contact with water and reuse them for future flooding prevention.
Use in flower gardens, lawns or landscape beds.
Place bags weighing less than 40 pounds at the curb for trash pick-up.
Use this sand in children’s sandboxes.
Dump sand on the beach, school yards or stormwater drains.
Leave bags weighing more than 40 pounds at the curb.
|Watch Emergency Services Director Rich Collins discuss the 2021 hurricane season and ways to stay prepared throughout the year on the Sarasota County Emergency Services Facebook page. For more information, call the Sarasota County Contact Center at 941-861-5000 or visit www.scgov.net.