Hurricane season officially begins June 1 and runs through the end of November. In preparation for the 2022 hurricane season, emergency management would like to remind citizens that the key to reducing the impact of a disaster is to have a plan, get a kit and stay informed. While "The first 72 is on you" has been the public safety message for many years, officials now recommend “One week ready” in which everyone should plan to have all the supplies needed to sustain a household (including pets) for seven days.
Florida’s Disaster Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday begins Sat., May 28 and runs through Fri., June 10. This is a great time to check and replenish supplies. Find a full list of qualifying items online at www.floridarevenue.com/DisasterPrep.
In the event of a tropical storm or hurricane, evacuations could be called for residents in evacuation zones or mobile homes. It's important to check now to see if you live in an evacuation zone and make a plan for where you will go if told to evacuate. Santa Rosa County's interactive Know Your Zone Map is searchable by address and will also show if any evacuations have been ordered or recommended. It's also important to check the evacuation zones of the streets in your area. If the streets flood, you may be unable to leave until the water recedes and responders may not be able to reach you in an emergency.
"Now, more than ever, residents in evacuation zones and mobile homes need to make a plan to stay with friends or family in a safer area - and to make sure that plan includes your pets," said Public Safety Director Tom Lloyd. "We recommend you travel tens of miles from your home rather than hundreds. You do not want to be stuck in traffic when a storm makes landfall."
Residents who feel comfortable that their homes are built to sustain the level of wind predicted are encouraged to shelter in place during a storm. While Santa Rosa County has a shelter plan to accommodate residents, shelters are not comfortable places.
For more information on how to receive emergency updates, make a plan for your family and prepare your home for a disaster including wildfires and tornados as Santa Rosa County has seen in the past two months, view the newly updated disaster preparedness guide at www.santarosa.fl.gov/emergency. Printed copies will be available in June in various locations including county offices and libraries, local chambers of commerce and some local retailers.
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