NOAA Hosts Hurricane Preparedness Week

Hurricane Sandy as seen from NOAA's GOES-13 satellite

From May 26 – June 1, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the National Weather Service will host their annual Hurricane Preparedness Week. The 2013 Atlantic hurricane season is forecast to be more severe than normal, and the Hurricane Preparedness Week website will have valuable information on how to protect your family during hurricane season.

Hurricane Preparedness Week will include information about various hurricane hazards, guides to tropical cyclones, and various outreach resources to help families prepare for hurricane-related natural disasters. Their website will also include safety precautions for mariners and printable watch and warning guides.

NOAA predicts around 11 major hurricanes will threaten the East Coast this season. A major hurricane is classified as a Category 3 or above, with winds of 111-129 miles per hour. According to NOAA, a Category 3 is when “Devastating damage will occur”. This damage could include winds that remove roofs and gables, the uprooting of trees, and an interruption to water and electricity services to the affected area. Sandy, originally classified as a hurricane but downgraded to a tropical storm with wind speeds between 39 and 73 miles per hour, caused $50 billion in damage to the East Coast.

According to NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, “NOAA’s Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook says there is a 70 percent likelihood of 13 to 20 named storms (winds of 39 mph or higher), of which 7 to 11 could become hurricanes (winds of 74 mph or higher), including 3 to 6 major hurricanes (Category 3, 4 or 5; winds of 111 mph or higher). These ranges are well above the seasonal average of 12 named storms, 6 hurricanes and 3 major hurricanes.” NOAA is dedicated to helping people prepare for these natural disasters.

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