Hurricanes

Articles focused on planning for, responding to, and recovery from hurricanes.


 

Cyclone Pam: A Story of Surviving a Category 5 Hurricane

Cyclone Pam: A Story of Surviving a Category 5 Hurricane

(Picture Above is Looking across Efate, Vanuatu before Cyclone Pam hit) Please Note: This is a firsthand experience of Cyclone Pam slamming into Vanuatu from the perspective of a couple living on Efate, the third largest island of the chain. Cyclones, Hurricanes and Typhoons are all the same weather phenomenon, but which word is used is based upon where the event occurs – Cyclones in the South Pacific and Indian Ocean, Hurricane in the North Atlantic and Pacific, and Typhoon in the Northwest Pacific. Preparing for Cyclone Pam We had plenty of warning from Internet based forecast services of a seriously big tropical storm heading for us. The Vanuatu Meteorological Service (VMS) refused to acknowledge the threat this system posed as it hadn’t entered their area of responsibility. Public pressure on social media eventually led to them issuing warnings before it did enter their area. This was such a large and ferocious system that many, including myself, got on to social media to warn people. This earned us insults and threats from people using the VMS Facebook name. I can’t recall what I was feeling in the build up to the arrival of Cyclone Pam as my business is boat orientated so we obviously had a lot to do to prepare, including craning our own boat out of the water. Preparing for such a big storm took up all of my mental capacity and I really had no time to feel anything. I guess, in retrospect, I was functioning on autopilot – some natural instinct directing me to do what I was doing. Sort of like a flight or fight...
The Essentials of Hurricane Preparedness

The Essentials of Hurricane Preparedness

“Preparation through education is less costly than learning through tragedy.” — Max Mayfield, Director National Hurricane Center Hurricane is a generic term for a type of tropical cyclone.  Such a cyclone is characterized by very strong wind, a low-pressure center, and a counterclockwise circulation in the Northern Hemisphere.  Wind speeds exceeding 155 miles per hour have been recorded in Category 5 hurricanes.  Tropical cyclones in the North Pacific are generally called Typhoons, while similar storms in the North Atlantic are called Hurricanes.  The most intense Atlantic hurricane was Hurricane Gilbert in 1988 with sustained winds of over 180 mph.  The largest recorded hurricane was the 1979 Supertyphoon Tip with a radius of 683 miles. In modern history, hurricanes have caused the death of thousands of people and resulted in billions of dollars of damage.  The States of Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, as well as the island territories of Puerto Rico and the American Virgin Islands, have all sustained direct hits from hurricanes. If one lives or visits an area prone to hurricanes, it pays to be prepared for this eventually.  While a fearsome force of nature, practical steps taken ahead of time can lessen the risk to one’s life, limb, and property.  Also by being prepared, one strengthens his or her community’s resilience.  The following guide is presented by Disaster.com to help one get organized and ready for a hurricane. Hurricane Preparedness for Your Home and Business “Oh, a storm is threat’ning, My very life today, If I don’t get some...
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