Evacuate. If local authorities direct you to evacuate, follow their instructions. If you live in a mobile home, a temporary structure, or in a high-rise building, you should also evacuate. If you simply don’t feel safe in your home, it’s also best to evacuate.
If you absolutely must stay in your home or you’re unable to evacuate, follow these precautions during the storm:
- Stay inside and away from windows and glass doors.
- Close all interior doors.
- Keep curtains and blinds closed.
- Stay put in an interior room, a hallway or a closet on the lowest level of your house.
- Lie on the floor under a sturdy object, such as a table.
- Don’t use candles or kerosene lamps. They’re a fire hazard.
- Keep up with news and weather reports.
- Do not assume the storm has passed if there’s a lull — it could be the eye of the storm.
What to do after the storm has passed:
- Check for injuries and administer first aid. FEMA has more detailed tips on how to care for your safety here.
- If you have evacuated, do not return to your home until it is deemed so.
- Beware of any loose or dangling power lines.
- Avoid floodwaters.
- Walk/drive cautiously. Only walk or drive outside if absolutely necessary.
- Only use the telephone if there is a serious emergency.
- Walk cautiously around the outside of your house before entering. Do not enter if you smell gas, if your home was damaged by fire or if you can see floodwaters around the area.
- Do not turn on utilities or use water until you are told it is safe to do so.
For information on what to look for inside your home, click here.