TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Governor Rick Scott was joined today with state and local emergency management officials to mark the beginning of the 2014 Atlantic hurricane season. The season, which extends from June 1 through November 30, represents the period when hurricanes are most likely to form in the Atlantic Ocean.
Governor Scott said, “With the 2014 hurricane season underway, I want to encourage every family to get a plan. Preparing for the upcoming hurricane season should be a priority for every Florida family, and we must take action now before it’s too late. Families should include important phone numbers and contact information for members of your family, as well as information on where you will go if there is a need to evacuate so you can meet your family if separated. While it has been ten years since the 2004 Hurricane Season where Florida was hit by four different storms, we know it only takes one to devastate a community.”
Governor Scott, recognizing the need to promote hurricane preparedness, signed the hurricane supply sales tax holiday into law last month. The new law allows the tax-free purchase of key hurricane preparedness items between May 31 and June 8. A full list of qualifying items can be found on FloridaDisaster.org.
Floridians and visitors are advised to develop a plan centered on self-sustainability for the first 72 hours following a disaster. FloridaDisaster.org includes valuable information on building a plan for individuals, families and businesses, taking into account those with special needs, persons with pets, and the elderly.
Local evacuation and storm surge zones are important parts of any hurricane plan. Florida emergency management officials actively encourage residents and visitors to review storm surge and evacuation zone information on local emergency management agency websites.
“The Know Your Zone campaign encourages everyone to understand storm surge and evacuation zones,” said FDEM Director Bryan W. Koon. “Storm surge is a real danger, but it isn’t the only danger. Heed instructions from your local emergency officials when advised to evacuate. Even if you’re in an area that may not experience storm surge, you could be completely cut off from rescuers if you choose to stay.”
"Preparedness starts at home. Rest assured, however, that the Florida National Guard remains committed to our mission of protecting the lives and property of Florida citizens," said Maj. Gen. Emmett R. Titshaw, Jr., Adjutant General of Florida. "We have more than 9,000 Soldiers and Airmen who have been trained for a wide range of life support, security and public safety tasks, and they are ready to respond when called upon by the Governor."
For the latest information on the 2014 Hurricane Season and to Get A Plan, visit FloridaDisaster.org, follow FDEM on social media on Twitter at @FLGetaPlan, Instagram @FLGetaPlan, Vine @FLGetaPlan, and Facebook at Facebook.com/KidsGetAPlan and Facebook.com/FloridaDivisionofEmergencyManagement.