Hurricane Irma: How to Prepare for the Storm

By:CBS News - September 5, 2017


MIAMI -- As Hurricane Irma gains strength and moves across the Atlantic Ocean, some residents in South Florida have begun preparing for the storm.

The National Hurricane Center's forecast cone shows there may be a threat not only to South Florida but also the Florida Keys and Cuba, CBS Miami reports.

Many residents took advantage of the Labor Day holiday to fill hurricane survival kits. Many were seen stocking up on supplies like water, food, gas and sandbags. Others shopped for generators in case of power outages.

"We do have shortages because [generators] were sent to Houston. We should get them Wednesday or Thursday," Rick Correa, an assistant manager at Home Depot, told the station.

The Keys are especially vulnerable to storm surge flooding and if a major hurricane is forecast to pass near them, they will begin tiered evacuations within the next day or two.

At last check, the closest approach time remains this weekend for South Florida and the Keys, CBS Miami reports.

The National Hurricane Center suggests the following materials:

    Water: At least 1 gallon of water per person/ animal per day for at least 3 days.

    Food: At least a 3-day supply of non-perishable food.

    Radio: A battery-powered radio with NOAA weather radio tone alert and extra batteries.

    Flashlight: Make sure you have extra batteries as well.

    First Aid Kit

    Manual can opener: If the electricity is out, you would need some way to open your canned food.

    Cellphone: Make sure you have extra battery packs or a solar charger to keep your phone on.

    Prescription medications



    Important family documents: Make sure you have copies of insurance policies and some form of state issued ID.

    Sturdy shoes: Think about pulling out those rain boots and sneakers.

    Pet supplies: Your pets will need enough food and water to also weather out the storm with you.

If you have a generator, make sure you have propane. Also, try to top off your gas tank ahead of time, CBS Miami writes.

The station also suggests that for those prepping, the last good day of weather will likely be Friday with weather starting to deteriorate Saturday. This of course can shift if the storm speeds up or slows down.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott declared a state of emergency Monday for the state's 67 counties. He urged "all Floridians to remain vigilant and stay alert to local weather and news," as well as visit to prepare.

    I have declared a state of emergency for every FL county to help state, federal and local governments work together as we prepare for #Irma.

    — Rick Scott (@FLGovScott) September 4, 2017

    I urge all Floridians to remain vigilant and stay alert to local weather and news and visit today to get prepared.

    — Rick Scott (@FLGovScott) September 4, 2017

"In Florida, we always prepare for the worst and hope for the best and while the exact path of Irma is not absolutely known at this time, we cannot afford to not be prepared," Scott said, CBS Miami reported earlier Monday.

In Miami-Dade County, officials can sign up for email or text alerts for public safety issues. Residents can use the county's SAFE app to find open evacuation centers in their area.

In the Florida Keys, Monroe County officials have activated their emergency management team. Residents can sign up for emergency alerts and reach their emergency hotline at 1-800-955-5504.