BE PREPARED

Know what is happening

Long term forcasts of hurricanes are available at http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATWOAT+shtml/151518.shtml

click on Cyclone Forecasts > Latest Advisory for graphics of storm paths, wind speeds, and surge warnings.

Belize specific forcast are available at http://hydromet.gov.bz/

Know safe refuges

The refuge that is safe depends on the hurricanes predicted strength at landfall. A house that is stong for a category 2 might not be for a category 3. See possible hurricane damage in table.

Protect your buildings

There are 3 key components for a hurricane resistent house:

1.Roof: The roof is one of the most critical components in any high-wind storm.

2. Windows and Doors: The strength of the windows is also critical, as the integrity of the entire home can be breached if the windows are broken.

3. Protection from flying debris: The biggest hazard to homeowners' safety during a hurricane or tornado is the debris that is driven by high winds.

First protect your windows and doors. The roof should be made as hurricane resistent as possible. Move furnature to higher places if a surge may occur.

Doors should open outward and be secured with 3 hindges, and besides the latch there should be bolts near the bottom and the top.

Windows should be covered with plywood. The best cover is 5/8" plywood that is inset 2" into the window frame. Then the plywood is held in place by a strip of 1" square or so timber nailed against it. For more detail see Protect your windows

Roof have a variety of easy methods to keep them much more secure. For more detail see Protect your roofs

Essential supplies

Power may fails so have torches and batteries, candles, or kerosine lamps.

Clean water and food for at least 3 days. Make sure that your gas is topped up.