Tropical cyclones have been quite common in the recent times. These refer to organized, rotating system of thunderstorms and clouds emanating over subtropical or tropical waters and incorporating closed, low-level circulation (NOAA, 2011). They are categorized in four groups including tropical depression, tropical storm, hurricane and major hurricane in the ascending order of their intensity (NOAA, 2011). The potential damage of tropical cyclones and hurricanes may be measured using the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale, a 1 to 5 rating that is based on the sustained wind speed of the hurricane ( HYPERLINK “http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/aboutsshws.php” http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/aboutsshws.php). There are varied forms of Hurricane hazards including heavy rainfall, storm surge, tornadoes, rip currents, high-winds and inland flooding ( HYPERLINK “http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/prepare/” http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/prepare/). It is well acknowledged that the mitigation against losses emanating from hurricanes via varied measures such as establishing and implementing effective building codes and safe building in areas that are vulnerable to hurricanes may reduce the impact that the storms have on people’s lives ( HYPERLINK “http://www.fema.gov/region-iii-mitigation-division/national-hurricane-program” http://www.fema.gov/region-iii-mitigation-division/national-hurricane-program). According to S. Fitzgerald (2012), the operational protocol in natural disasters involves four steps including mitigation, preparation, response and recovery. Various things may be done to avoid hurricane damage including knowing the risk, installing hurricane straps, installation and maintenance of storm shutters (Kiesling, 2012). In addition, the efforts may include installation of generators to cater for emergencies (power outages), removing or anchoring potential windborne objects, eliminating trees that may fall on the house, and reinforcing doors (FEMA, 2011).
To prepare for tropical cyclones and hurricanes, have a clear understanding of the community’s emergency plans, identify any potential home hazards and determine how they should be secured. In addition, it is imperative that local authorities are informed about any individuals with special needs. On the same note, it is imperative that individuals keep tabs on the weather conditions through radio and television, and follow orders for evacuation. In addition, they should ensure that they have packed emergency supplies that they may need (CDC, 2012).
FEMA, 2011. Avoiding Hurricane Damage: A Checklist for Homeowners. United States Department of Homeland Security
Fitzgerald, S. (2012). Applied-Planning Hierarchy (Public Policy Decision Space).
NOAA, (2011). A Preparedness Guide.
CDC, (2005). Hurricanes. Department of Health and Human Services. Retrieved from HYPERLINK “http://emergency.cdc.gov/disasters/hurricanes/readiness_factsheet.asp” http://emergency.cdc.gov/disasters/hurricanes/readiness_factsheet.asp
NOAA, (2012). Hurricane Preparedness Week. Retrieved from HYPERLINK “http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/prepare/” http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/prepare/
Kiesling, E. FEMA 320: Safe Room Prescriptive Designs. Retrieved from HYPERLINK “http://www.fema.gov/medialibrary/collections/2484” http://www.fema.gov/medialibrary/collections/2484
NOAA (2012). Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Retrieved fro HYPERLINK “http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/aboutsshws.php” http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/aboutsshws.php
FEMA, (2012). National Hurricane Program: Mitigating Against Hurricane Losses. Retrieved from HYPERLINK “http://www.fema.gov/region-iii-mitigation-division/national-hurricane-program” http://www.fema.gov/region-iii-mitigation-division/national-hurricane-program