Skip Navigation 
Go to NOAA's main page NWS logo National Weather Service

Southern Region Headquarters
Hurricane Awareness Local forecast by "City, St" or zip code  

 You are at: NWS Home » SR Homepage » Tropical Weather » Awareness » Tropical Cyclone 101 » Protecting Your Peace of Mind

Call To Action: Protecting your Peace of Mind

Tropical cyclones, in and of themselves, are not "bad" things. They are just one way nature transfers heat energy from the tropics to the north and south poles. What makes them bad to us is when they affect us. While these storms cannot be prevented you can have peace of mind knowing you did all you could to minimize the impact on your life.

View of hurricane fromIf you are moving into an area that can be affect by tropical storms, try to avoid living in a place where you may be at risk of storm surge. Also, creeks and rivers, while picturesque, could become disasters areas during a flood; stick to higher ground. Anything to can do to minimize the future impact of a tropical cyclone on your home will be one less thing to worry about if the event occurs.

Remember, past experiences of tropical cyclones are NO measure of future events. There may, and probably will be times, when you return to your home, after evacuating, to find no damage whatsoever as the storm either weakened or turned away from where we thought it would strike. However, the time you spent preparing your home and loved ones was NOT wasted because the next time you may not be so fortunate.

You may hear some of the "locals" make statements like "I've lived here x-number of years made it through storms such-and-such" or "a certain hill or creek protected us at this-or-that place". While you cannot discount their experiences, you can know they were fortunate during those events. It's best to be prepared. This could be the year a tropical cyclone could bring devastating results.

Evacuation route signFor your peace of mind, always heed your local officials instructions. It is their responsibility to serve your community. If you follow their guiding, you will make their job much easier. If they ask you to evacuate, do so immediately. This way, you will not be a burden on the local rescue teams so they can better assist the ones who may need rescue through no fault of their own.

Your evacuation will also aid the police after the storm passes. Unfortunately, some people try to take advantage of others going through difficult situations. While generally not widespread, looting does occur in neighborhoods damaged by tropical storms. Your absence will help the police better monitor the region and make it easier to spot the ones who do not belong.

One final word of caution. You may live thousands of miles from the effects of tropical cyclone and think you can not be a victum. However, that is not always the case. Vehicles that have been flooded are suppose to be relegated for salvage but many are not. Unscrupulous people do superficial cleaning jobs on the vehicles and wholesale them to dealers across the nation. If you are considering purchasing a used vehicle, be sure to check the title history and hire a trusted mechanic to do a thorough inspection including checking behind the door panel for signs of flooding. A few dollars spent now could save your thousands of dollars down the road and maybe even you and your family's life.

Back: Tropical Cyclone 101

National Weather Service
Southern Region Headquarters
819 Taylor Street, Room 10A06
Fort Worth, TX 76102
Page last modified: July 27, 2004
Disclaimer Privacy Policy