DPS: Be prepared for hurricane season - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

DPS: Be prepared for hurricane season

From the Department of Public Safety:

AUSTIN – The Texas Department of Public Safety is reminding residents about the upcoming hurricane season and urging individuals to start preparing now for any possible storms. Hurricane season begins June 1 and continues through Nov. 30.

"Hurricanes and tropical storms can wreak havoc on the lives of residents in a storm's path. Although Texans living along the coast are the most vulnerable, powerful storms can have far-reaching effects on the state as a whole," said DPS Director Steven McCraw. "Since early planning and preparation can greatly increase the protection of life and property, residents should begin taking precautions now."

All Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico coastal areas are subject to hurricanes or tropical storms. Because the strongest winds in a hurricane are not located precisely at the center, it is possible for a storm to affect conditions over land even if landfall does not occur.

Hurricanes can cause catastrophic damage to coastlines and areas several hundred miles inland, and winds can exceed 155 miles per hour. In addition, hurricanes and tropical storms can also spawn tornadoes, create storm surges along the coast and cause extensive damage from flooding.

Here are several measures residents can take now to prepare for potential storms:

• Assemble an emergency kit that includes essential documents, supplies and provisions.

• Review hurricane evacuation maps, and select a route for you and your family.

• Plan how all family members and pets will evacuate safely.

• Consider any special needs for individuals with disabilities or the elderly.

• Stay informed about changing weather conditions in and around your area.

For more information on these tips and other ways to prepare for the 2013 hurricane season, please visit: www.texasprepares.org.

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