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By FDOH-Escambia

August 31, 2018

Pensacola, Fla. – Last September was a busy month for Florida with multiple storms impacting the state, including Northwest Florida. In observance of September being National Preparedness Month, the Florida Department of Health in Escambia County encourages residents to take this opportunity to prepare for disasters, especially hurricanes and tropical storms.


Hurricanes and tropical storms cause high winds, flooding, heavy rain, and storm surges. Even if there is limited risk of landfall, it is important to be prepared and plan ahead to ensure your family’s health and safety.

Tips to help you prepare now: 

  • Determine storm risks to your home, property, or business.
  • Assemble an emergency supply kit. Include enough food and supplies for you and your family for at least 72 hours (accommodate pets if you have them). Include any medications you may need. Ask your doctor about storing prescription medications such as heart and high blood pressure medication, insulin and other prescription drugs.
  • Check your insurance coverage and ensure you have copies of important documents in your emergency supply kit.
  • Strengthen your home and complete any needed repairs.
  • Identify trusted sources of weather information. Get tech ready.
  • Develop a written hurricane plan, practice it with your family, and keep it in a safe, easily accessible location.
  • Know your evacuation zone and plan how you will evacuate.

If a storm is approaching: 

  • Review your written hurricane plan.
  • Check your emergency supply kit.
  • Cover windows with storm shutters or plywood.
  • Secure movable outdoor items by relocating them into a garage or shed.
  • Prepare your vehicle. Fill your vehicle’s gas tank.
  • Tune in to local news or radio for up-to-date information.
  • Know how to turn off your gas, electricity, and water in case you need to evacuate.
  • Designate a shelter, a room without windows, in your home if you cannot evacuate. 

If you are medically dependent on electricity or oxygen, need transportation to evacuate, or need assistance to maintain your health due to disability, sign up with Florida’s Special Needs Registry. Specific information regarding the Escambia County Special Needs Registry and Public Shelter Program and other disaster-related information is available at

The Florida Division of Emergency Management and the National Hurricane Center are great resources for weather information and will issue frequent watches, warnings, forecasts and analyses of severe tropical weather. Stay up to date with local preparedness information at 

To learn more about National Preparedness Month, visit


About the Florida Department of Health

The department, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.

Follow us on Twitter at @HealthyEscambia and on Facebook. For more information about the Florida Department of Health please visit