PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MELBOURNE FL
700 AM EST THU JAN 28 2010

...JANUARY 28 IS HURRICANE AND FLOODING AWARENESS DAY...

EAST CENTRAL FLORIDA ESCAPED SIGNIFICANT WIND EFFECTS FROM HURRICANES
IN 2009. HOWEVER...THE SEVERE IMPACTS FROM THE WIDESPREAD HISTORICAL 
FLOODING CAUSED BY TROPICAL STORM FAY IN AUGUST 2008 SERVES AS A STARK
REMINDER THAT FRESH WATER FLOODING FROM TROPICAL STORMS CAN PRODUCE 
DEVASTATION ON AN EQUAL OR GREATER SCALE THAN FROM HURRICANES.

ON AVERAGE...A HURRICANE WILL PASS WITHIN 65 MILES OF THE EAST CENTRAL
FLORIDA COAST EVERY 6 TO 10 YEARS. WHILE HURRICANE STRIKES TYPICALLY 
ARE NOT A YEARLY OCCURRENCE...EAST CENTRAL FLORIDA WILL AT LEAST BE 
SIGNIFICANTLY THREATENED A FEW TIMES EACH DECADE. REGARDLESS OF THE 
SHORT OR LONG TERM OUTLOOK...CENTRAL FLORIDIANS NEED TO BE PREPARED 
EVERY YEAR. AS FAY ILLUSTRATED...IT ONLY TAKES THE EFFECTS FROM ONE 
TROPICAL CYCLONE TO SIGNIFICANTLY IMPACT THE AREA.

NOW IS THE TIME TO BEGIN TO PREPARE FOR THE 2010 HURRICANE SEASON. 
DEVELOP A HURRICANE PLAN AND HAVE IT IN PLACE BEFORE A STORM THREATENS.
KNOW IF YOU LIVE IN A HURRICANE EVACUATION ZONE OR A FEDERAL FLOOD
ZONE. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE YOUR HURRICANE KIT STOCKED WITH THE SUPPLIES 
SUCH AS SUCH AS BOTTLED WATER...CANNED FOODS AND BATTERIES BEFORE THE 
START OF EACH SEASON. CONSIDER BUYING AND INSTALLING HURRICANE SHUTTERS.
WHEN A STORM THREATENS...PURCHASE GAS AND TAKE OUT EXTRA CASH SINCE
NEITHER MAY BE AVAILABLE FOR SEVERAL DAYS FOLLOWING A TROPICAL CYCLONE. 
PLAN TO BUY ENOUGH PROVISIONS TO LAST A MINIMUM OF THREE TO FIVE DAYS
FOR EACH MEMBER OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD.

REMEMBER A HURRICANE OR TROPICAL STORM IS MORE THAN JUST WIND. TROPICAL
CYCLONES BRING MULTIPLE HAZARDS...INCLUDING STORM SURGE...POUNDING SURF
...FRESH WATER FLOODING AND TORNADOES. HISTORICALLY...WATER CAUSES MOST
OF THE DEATHS IN HURRICANES. ABOUT 90 PERCENT OF ALL HURRICANE RELATED
DEATHS OCCUR FROM DROWNING...RESULTING FROM STORM SURGE OR FRESH WATER 
FLOODING. WHILE STORM SURGE IS NOT PARTICULARLY EXTREME ALONG THE CENTRAL
FLORIDA ATLANTIC COAST...EROSION FREQUENTLY CAUSES BREACHES IN THE DUNE 
LINE AND SEVERE LOSS OF BEACH AND SHORELINE PROPERTY. BARRIER ISLAND 
RESIDENTS SHOULD HEED ADVICE FROM LOCAL OFFICIALS AND EVACUATE WHEN A
HURRICANE THREATENS. PEOPLE ARE ALSO URGED TO BE EXTREMELY CAUTIOUS DURING
THE STORMS AFTERMATH. PERSONS WHO SURVIVE THE INTITAL PASSAGE OF A TROPICAL
CYCLONE HAVE DIED AS A RESULT OF A NUMBER OF FACTORS...INCLUDING CARBON 
MONOXIDE POISONING FROM GENERATORS... ELECTROCUTION FROM DOWNED WIRES...
SEVERE INJURIES DURING DEBRIS REMOVAL AND MOTOR VEHICLE ACCIDENTS. EXTREME
CARE MUST BE USED WHEN USING GENERATORS. MAKE SURE TO RUN GENERATORS IN 
AN OPEN OUTDOOR LOCATION...AND NEVER IN AN ENCLOSED AREA.

AS FAY CLEARLY SHOWED...THE FLAT TERRAIN OF THE AREA LENDS ITSELF TO 
WIDESPREAD INUNDATION OF POORLY DRAINED AND LOW LYING AREAS DURING HEAVY
RAIN EVENTS...RATHER THAN THE FLASH FLOODING THAT OCCURS IN OTHER PARTS
OF THE COUNTRY. IT CAN ALSO PRODUCE SIGNIFICANT...LONGER LASTING IMPACTS.
WATER CAN ENTER HOMES AND OTHER STRUCTURES...AS WELL AS MAKE DRIVING
EXTREMELY HAZARDOUS DUE TO FLOODED ROADS WHICH CAN SOMETIMES OBSCURE CANALS.
THIS FLOODING CAN LAST FOR DAYS...AND IN AREAS NEAR THE SAINT JOHNS RIVER...
FOR WEEKS. IF WATER IS COVERING A ROADWAY...DO NOT ASSUME THAT YOU CAN 
DRIVE THROUGH IT. TURN AROUND...DONT DROWN.

FORTUNATELY...YOU CAN PLAN WELL IN ADVANCE FOR FLOODS. THE BEST ADVICE
IS TO HAVE FLOOD INSURANCE...SEPARATE FROM YOUR HOMEOWNERS INSURANCE. 
KNOW IF YOU LIVE IN AN AREA THAT FLOODS FREQUENTLY FROM HEAVY RAINS...
BUT REMEMBER THAT YOU DONT NEED TO BE IN A FLOOD ZONE TO EXPERIENCE
FLOODING.

MONITOR NOAA WEATHER RADIO BEFORE...DURING AND AFTER AN EVENT TO STAY
ABREAST OF THE LATEST INFORMATION. YOU CAN ALSO VISIT THE NATIONAL 
WEATHER SERVICE WEB SITE IN MELBOURNE AT WEATHER.GOV/MELBOURNE WHERE 
THE LATEST HURRICANE AND FLOOD WATCHES AND WARNINGS WILL BE AVAILABLE...
ALONG WITH THE NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER FIVE DAY TROPICAL CYCLONE TRACK
AND INTENSITY FORECASTS. 

$$

MOSES/GLITTO

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