Weather Survival Guide

Note: All of the info on this page is by Ready.gov. For more info, please visit - https://www.ready.gov/

Hurricanes

Hurricanes are dangerous and can cause major damage because of storm surge, wind damage, and flooding. They can happen along any U.S. coast or in any territory in the Atlantic or Pacific oceans. Storm surge is historically the leading cause of hurricane-related deaths in the United States.

Prepare for Hurricanes

Know your Hurricane Risk

Hurricanes are not just a coastal problem. Find out how rain, wind, water could happen where you live so you can start preparing now. Be sure to consider how COVID-19 may affect your plans. Keep in mind that your best protection from the effects of a hurricane may differ from your best protection from diseases, such as coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Make an Emergency Plan

Make sure everyone in your household knows and understands your hurricane plan. Discuss the latest Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidance on Coronavirus (COVID-19) and how it may affect your hurricane planning. Don’t forget a plan for the office, kids’ daycare, and anywhere you frequent.

Know your Evacuation Zone

You may have to evacuate quickly due to a hurricane. Learn your evacuation routes, practice with household, pets, and identify where you will stay.

  • Follow the instructions from local emergency managers, who work closely with state, local, tribal, and territorial agencies and partners. They will provide the latest recommendations based on the threat to your community and appropriate safety measures.

  • Due to limited space as a result of COVID-19, public evacuation shelters may not be the safest choice for you and your family. If you don’t live in a mandatory evacuation zone, make a plan to shelter in place in your home, if it is safe to do so. If you cannot shelter at home, make plans to shelter with friends and family, where you will be safer and more comfortable.

  • Note that your regular shelter may not be open this year. Check with local authorities for the latest information about public shelters.

  • If you must evacuate to a public shelter, try to bring items that can help protect you and others in the shelter from COVID-19, such as hand sanitizer, cleaning materials, and two cloth face coverings per person. Children under 2 years old and people who have trouble breathing should not wear masks.

  • Review the CDC’s guidelines for “Going to a Public Disaster Shelter During the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Those with Disabilities

If you or anyone in your household is an individual with a disability identify if you may need additional help during an emergency.

Prepare your Business

Make sure your business has a continuity plan to continue operating when disaster strikes.

Recognize Warnings and Alerts

Have several ways to receive alerts. Download the FEMA app and receive real-time alertsfrom the National Weather Service for up to five locations nationwide. Sign up for community alerts in your area and be aware of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) and Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA)- which requires no-sign up.

Sign up for email updates and follow the latest guidelines about coronavirus from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and your local authorities to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Review Important Documents

Make sure your insurance policies and personal documents like ID are up to date. Make copies and keep them in a secure password protected digital space.

Strengthen your Home

Declutter drains and gutters, bring in outside furniture, consider hurricane shutters.

Get Tech Ready

Keep your cell phone charged when you know a hurricane is in the forecast and purchase backup charging devices to power electronics.

Help your Neighborhood

Check with neighbors, senior adults, or those who may need additional help securing hurricane plans to see how you can be of assistance to others

Gather Supplies

Have enough supplies for your household, include medication, disinfectant supplies, masks, pet supplies in your go bag or car trunk. After a hurricane, you may not have access to these supplies for days or even weeks.

  • Being prepared allows you to avoid unnecessary excursions and to address minor medical issues at home, alleviating the burden on urgent care centers and hospitals.

  • Remember that not everyone can afford to respond by stocking up on necessities. For those who can afford it, making essential purchases and slowly building up supplies in advance will allow for longer time periods between shopping trips. This helps to protect those who are unable to procure essentials in advance of the pandemic and must shop more frequently. In addition, consider avoiding WIC-approved products so that those who rely on these products can access them.


Thunderstorms

Lightning is a leading cause of injury and death from weather-related hazards. Although most lightning victims survive, people struck by lightning often report a variety of long-term, debilitating symptoms. Thunderstorms are dangerous storms that include lightning and can:

IF YOU ARE UNDER A THUNDERSTORM WARNING, FIND SAFE SHELTER RIGHT AWAY

  • When thunder roars, go indoors!

  • Move from outdoors into a building or car.

  • Pay attention to alerts and warnings.

  • Unplug appliances.

  • Do not use landline phones.

HOW TO STAY SAFE WHEN A THUNDERSTORM THREATENS

Prepare NOW

  • Know your area’s risk for thunderstorms. In most places, they can occur year-round and at any hour.

  • Create an emergency plan so that you and your family know what to do, where to go, and what you will need to protect yourselves from the effects of a thunderstorm during the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Sign up for your community’s warning system. The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts. Sign up for email updates and follow the latest guidelines about coronavirus from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and your local authorities to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

  • Identify nearby, sturdy buildings close to where you live, work, study, and play.

  • Cut down or trim trees that may be in danger of falling on your home.

  • Consider buying surge protectors, lightning rods, or a lightning protection system to protect your home, appliances, and electronic devices.

Survive DURING

  • When thunder roars, go indoors. A sturdy building is the safest place to be during a thunderstorm.

    • If you are sheltering with people who are not part of your household, be sure to wear a mask and maintain a distance of at least six feet between yourself and others. Masks should not be worn by children under 2 years old, people who have trouble breathing, and people who cannot remove them on their own.

  • Pay attention to weather reports and warnings of thunderstorms. Be ready to change plans, if necessary, to be near shelter.

  • When you receive a thunderstorm warning or hear thunder, go inside immediately.

  • If indoors, avoid running water or using landline phones. Electricity can travel through plumbing and phone lines. Do not wash your hands with soap and water. Instead, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol to help slow the spread of COVID-19.

  • Protect your property. Unplug appliances and other electric devices. Secure outside furniture.

  • If boating or swimming, get to land and find a sturdy, grounded shelter or vehicle immediately.

  • If necessary, take shelter in a car with a metal top and sides. Do not touch anything metal. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.

  • Avoid flooded roadways. Turn Around. Don’t Drown! Just six inches of fast-moving water can knock you down, and one foot of moving water can sweep your vehicle away. There is no evidence that COVID-19 can be spread by water, however floodwaters may contain debris, chemicals, or waste that are harmful to your health.

Be Safe AFTER

  • Listen to authorities and weather forecasts for information on whether it is safe to go outside and instructions regarding potential flash flooding.

  • Watch for fallen power lines and trees. Report them immediately.

  • If you are sick and need medical attention, contact your healthcare provider for further care instructions and shelter in place, if possible. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 9-1-1 and let the operator know if you have, or think you might have, or have been exposed to COVID-19. If possible, put on a mask before help arrives.

  • Continue taking steps to protect yourself from COVID-19 and other infectious diseases by washing your hands often and cleaning commonly touched surfaces with disinfecting products.

  • Engage virtually with your community through video and phone calls. Know that it’s normal to feel anxious or stressed. Take care of your body and talk to someone if you are feeling upset. Many people may already feel fear and anxiety about the coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19). The threat of a thunderstorm can add additional stress. Follow CDC guidance for managing stress during a traumatic event and managing stress during COVID-19.

Tornadoes

Tornadoes are violently rotating columns of air that extend from a thunderstorm to the ground. Tornadoes can destroy buildings, flip cars, and create deadly flying debris.

A tornado can:

  • Happen anytime and anywhere.

  • Bring intense winds, over 200 miles per hour.

  • Look like funnels.

If you are under a tornado or severe weather warning:

  • Visit NOAA Weather Radio and your local news or official social media accounts for updated emergency information. Follow the instructions of state, local and tribal officials.

  • Go to a safe shelter immediately, such as a safe room, basement, storm cellar or a small interior room on the lowest level of a sturdy building.

  • Stay away from windows, doors, and outside walls.

  • Do not go under an overpass or bridge. You’re safer in a low, flat location.

  • Watch out for flying debris that can cause injury or death.

  • Use your arms to protect your head and neck.

  • If you can’t stay at home, make plans to go to a public shelter.

Preparing for a Tornado

  • Know your area’s tornado risk. In the U.S., the Midwest and the Southeast have a greater risk for tornadoes.

  • Know the signs of a tornado, including a rotating, funnel-shaped cloud, an approaching cloud of debris, or a loud roar like a freight train.

  • Sign up for your community’s warning system. The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and NOAA Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts. If your community has sirens, then become familiar with the warning tone.

  • Pay attention to weather reports. Meteorologists can predict when conditions might be right for a tornado.

  • Identify and practice going to a safe shelter such as a safe room built using FEMA criteria or a storm shelter built to ICC 500 standards. The next best protection is a small, interior, windowless room on the lowest level of a sturdy building.

  • Consider Overlapping Hazards such as Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). Review the CDC's guidelines for going to a public disaster shelter during the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Plan for your pet. They are an important member of your family, so they need to be included in your family’s emergency plan.

  • Prepare for long-term stay at home or sheltering in place by gathering emergency supplies, cleaning supplies, non-perishable foods, water, medical supplies and medication.

Staying Safe During a Tornado

  • Immediately go to a safe location that you have identified.

  • Listen to EAS, NOAA Weather Radio, or local alerting systems for current emergency information and instructions.

  • Protect yourself by covering your head or neck with your arms and putting materials such as furniture and blankets around or on top of you.

  • Do not try to outrun a tornado in a vehicle if you are in a car. If you are in a car or outdoors and cannot get to a building, cover your head and neck with your arms and cover your body with a coat or blanket, if possible.

Staying Safe After a Tornado

  • Keep listening to EAS, NOAA Weather Radio, and local authorities for updated information.

  • Stay clear of fallen power lines or broken utility lines.

  • Save your phone calls for emergencies and use text messaging or social media to communicate with family and friends.

  • Contact your healthcare provider if you are sick and need medical attention. Wait for further care instructions and continue to shelter in place.

  • Wear appropriate gear during clean-up such as thick-soled shoes, long pants, and work gloves, use appropriate face coverings or masks if cleaning mold or other debris.

Drought

Nearly every part of the U.S. experiences periods of reduced rainfall. Planning in advance for a drought can protect us in dry years.

Before a Drought

The best way to prepare for a drought is to conserve water. Make conserving water a part of your daily life.

Indoor Water Conservation Tips Before a Drought

GENERAL

  • Never pour water down the drain when there may be another use for it. For example, use it to water your indoor plants or garden.

  • Fix dripping faucets by replacing washers. One drop per second wastes 2,700 gallons of water a year.

  • Check all plumbing for leaks and have any leaks repaired by a plumber.

  • Retrofit all household faucets by installing aerators with flow restrictors.

  • Install an instant hot water heater on your sink.

  • Insulate your water pipes to reduce heat loss and prevent them from breaking.

  • Install a water-softening system only when the minerals in the water would damage your pipes. Turn the softener off while on vacation.

  • Choose appliances that are more energy and water efficient.

BATHROOM

  • Consider purchasing a low-volume toilet that uses less than half the water of older models. Note: In many areas, low-volume units are required by law.

  • Install a toilet displacement device to cut down on the amount of water needed to flush. Place a one-gallon plastic jug of water into the tank to displace toilet flow. Make sure it does not interfere with the operating parts.

  • Replace your showerhead with an ultra-low-flow version.

KITCHEN

  • Instead of using the garbage disposal, throw food in the garbage or start a compost pile to dispose it.

Outdoor Water Conservation Tips Before a Drought

GENERAL

  • Check your well pump periodically. If the automatic pump turns on and off while water is not being used, you have a leak.

  • Plant native and/or drought-tolerant grasses, ground covers, shrubs and trees. Once established, your plants won't need as much watering. Group plants together based on similar water needs.

  • Don't buy water toys that require a constant stream of water.

  • Don't install ornamental water features (such as fountains) unless they use re-circulated water.

  • Consider rainwater harvesting where practical.

  • Contact your local water provider for information and assistance.

LAWN CARE

  • Position sprinklers so water lands on the lawn and shrubs and not on paved areas.

  • Repair sprinklers that spray a fine mist.

  • Check sprinkler systems and timing devices regularly to be sure they operate properly.

  • Raise the lawn mower blade to at least three inches or to its highest level. A higher cut encourages grass roots to grow deeper and holds soil moisture.

  • Plant drought-resistant lawn seed. Reduce or eliminate lawn areas that are not used frequently.

  • Don't over-fertilize your lawn. Applying fertilizer increases the need for water. Apply fertilizers that contain slow-release, water-insoluble forms of nitrogen.

  • Choose a water-efficient irrigation system such as drip irrigation for your trees, shrubs and flowers.

  • Turn irrigation down in fall and off in winter. Water manually in winter only if needed.

  • Use mulch around trees and plants to retain moisture in the soil. Mulch also helps control weeds that compete with plants for water.

  • Invest in a weather-based irrigation controller—or a smart controller. These devices will automatically adjust the watering time and frequency based on soil moisture, rain, wind, and evaporation and transpiration rates. Check with your local water agency to see if there is a rebate available for the purchase of a smart controller.

POOL

  • Install a new water-saving pool filter. A single back flushing with a traditional filter uses 180 to 250 gallons of water.

  • Cover pools and spas to reduce water evaporation.

During a Drought

Always observe state and local restrictions on water use during a drought. Contact your state or local government for current information and suggestions.

Indoor Water Conservation Tips During a Drought

BATHROOM

  • Avoid flushing the toilet unnecessarily. Dispose of tissues, insects and other similar waste in the trash rather than the toilet.

  • Take short showers instead of baths. Turn on the water only to get wet and lather and then again to rinse off.

  • Avoid letting the water run while brushing your teeth, washing your face or shaving.

  • Place a bucket in the shower to catch excess water for watering plants.

KITCHEN

  • Operate automatic dishwashers only when they are fully loaded. Use the "light wash" feature to use less water.

  • Hand wash dishes by filling two containers—one with soapy water and the other with rinse water containing a small amount of chlorine bleach.

  • Clean vegetables in a pan filled with water rather than running water from the tap.

  • Store drinking water in the refrigerator. Do not let the tap run while you are waiting for water to cool.

  • Avoid wasting water waiting for it to get hot. Capture it for other uses such as plant watering or heat it on the stove or in a microwave.

  • Don't rinse dishes before placing them in the dishwasher, just remove large particles of food.

  • Avoid using running water to thaw meat or other frozen foods. Defrost food overnight in the refrigerator or use the defrost setting on your microwave.

LAUNDRY

  • Operate clothes washers only when they are fully loaded or set the water level for the size of your load.

Outdoor Water Conservation Tips During a Drought

CAR WASHING

  • Use a commercial car wash that recycles water.

  • If you wash your own car, use a shut-off nozzle that can be adjusted down to a fine spray on your hose.

LAWN CARE

  • Avoid over watering your lawn and water only when needed.

  • A heavy rain eliminates the need for watering for up to two weeks. Most of the year, lawns only need one inch of water per week.

  • Check the soil moisture levels with a soil probe, spade or large screwdriver. You don't need to water if the soil is still moist. If your grass springs back when you step on it, it doesn't need water yet.

  • If your lawn does require watering, do so early in the morning or later in the evening, when temperatures are cooler.

  • Check your sprinkler system frequently and adjust sprinklers so only your lawn is watered and not the house, sidewalk, or street.

  • Water in several short sessions rather than one long one, in order for your lawn to better absorb moisture and avoid runoff.

  • Use a broom or blower instead of a hose to clean leaves and other debris from your driveway or sidewalk.

  • Avoid leaving sprinklers or hoses unattended. A garden hose can pour out 600 gallons or more in only a few hours.

  • In extreme drought, allow lawns to die in favor of preserving trees and large shrubs.

Extreme Heat

Extreme heat is a period of high heat and humidity with temperatures above 90 degrees for at least two to three days. In extreme heat your body works extra hard to maintain a normal temperature, which can lead to death. In fact, extreme heat is responsible for the highest number of annual deaths among all weather-related hazards.

Remember:

  • Extreme heat can occur quickly and without warning.

  • Older adults, children and sick or overweight individuals are at greater risk from extreme heat.

  • Humidity increases the feeling of heat as measured by a heat index.

IF YOU ARE UNDER AN EXTREME HEAT WARNING:

  • Find air conditioning.

  • Avoid strenuous activities.

  • Wear light clothing.

  • Check on family members and neighbors.

  • Drink plenty of fluids.

  • Watch for heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

  • Never leave people or pets in a closed car.

HOW TO STAY SAFE WHEN EXTREME HEAT THREATENS

Prepare NOW

Find places in your community where you can go to get cool while following the latest guidelines from CDC about social distancing to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Try to keep your home cool:

  • Do not rely on a fan as your primary cooling device.

  • Cover windows with drapes or shades.

  • Weather-strip doors and windows.

  • Use window reflectors such as aluminum foil-covered cardboard to reflect heat back outside.

  • Add insulation to keep the heat out.

  • Use a powered attic ventilator, or attic fan, to regulate the heat level of a building’s attic by clearing hot air.

  • Install window air conditioners and insulate around them.

  • Learn to recognize the signs of heat illness. For more information visit: www.cdc.gov/disasters/extremeheat/warning.html

Be Safe DURING

Never leave a child, adult, or animal alone inside a vehicle on a warm day. Exposing yourself to the sun or to high temperatures does not protect you from coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Sign up for email updates and follow the latest guidelines about coronavirus from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and your local authorities to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Find places with air conditioning. Libraries, shopping malls, and community centers can be a cool place to beat the heat. Stay informed and check with local authorities about possible closures prior to going to cooling centers. Once there, follow CDC guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Some steps you can take to keep yourself and others safe from COVID-19 include:

  • Wash your hands often, keep a physical distance of at least six feet between you and people who are not part of your household, and avoid crowds and large groups.

  • Wear a face cloth covering. Children under 2 years old, people who have trouble breathing, and people who are unable to remove masks on their own should not wear face coverings.

  • If you are wearing a mask and feel yourself overheating or having trouble breathing, put at least 6 feet of distance between yourself and others and remove the mask.

  • If you can, wash your reusable mask regularly.

  • If air conditioning is not available in your home:

  • Contact Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) for help.

  • Contact your local health department or locate an air-conditioned shelter in your area.

  • Spend some time at a shopping mall or public library- even a few hours spent in air conditioning can help.

    • Keep at least six feet of space between you and individuals who are not a part of your immediate household.

    • Your community may set up emergency alternatives for cooling centers, such as using parked air-conditioned buses or movie theaters, as normal cooling centers may not have enough space for physical distancing. Pay attention to guidance from local officials to determine where the nearest cooling center is.

    • Wear masks when in public spaces. Masks should not be worn by children under 2 years old, people who have trouble breathing, and people who are unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove them.

    • Try to bring items that can help protect you and others in the cooling center from COVID-19, such as hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol and cleaning materials.

    • Review the CDC’s guidelines for “Going to a Public Disaster Shelter During the COVID-19 Pandemic.”

  • Take cool showers or baths.

  • Don’t rely solely on fans to keep you cool. While electric fans might provide some comfort, when temperatures are really hot, they won’t prevent heat-related illness.

  • Use your stove and oven less to maintain a cooler temperature in your home.

  • If you’re outside, find shade. Wear a hat wide enough to protect your face. Wear appropriate cloth masks and keep a physical distance of at least six feet while you’re outside. Don’t wear a masks if you have trouble breathing or if you are unable to remove it on your own. Children under the age of 2 shouldn’t wear face coverings. If you can, wash your reusable mask regularly.

  • During extreme heat events, use a cloth mask that has breathable fabric, such as cotton, instead of polyester. Keep in mind that masks with filters, which are used when cleaning mold or debris, are often made with synthetic materials, which makes it harder to breathe.

  • Ensure that your mask covers your mouth and nose and is somewhat snug on your face, even when it is hot. Make sure that it is not too tight. You should not have trouble breathing while wearing the mask. If it is too tight, loosen it so that if fits snuggly without slipping. If it is too tight, loosen it so that if fits snugly without slipping.

  • Be sure to have several clean masks to use in case your mask becomes wet or damp from sweat during an extreme heat event. Cloth masks should not be worn when they become damp or wet. Be sure to wash your cloth masks regularly.

  • Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing.

  • Drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated. If you or someone you care for is on a special diet, ask a doctor what would be best. There is no evidence showing that you can get COVID-19 through drinking water or touching water. Conventional water treatment methods, such as those in most municipal drinking water systems, use filtration and disinfection methods that should remove or inactivate the virus that causes COVID-19.

    • Keep in mind that not everyone can afford to stock up on supplies, such as sports drinks, cleaning supplies, and non-perishable foods. If you can, slowly buy supplies in advance so that you don’t have to go to the store as often. Shopping less often helps to slow the spread of COVID-19. By social distancing and only shopping when you must, you can protect those who are unable to buy supplies in advance and must shop more frequently.

      • Being prepared allows you to avoid unnecessary excursions and to address minor medical issues at home, alleviating the burden on urgent care centers and hospitals.

      • Remember that not everyone can afford to respond by stocking up on necessities. For those who can afford it, making essential purchases and slowly building up supplies in advance will allow for longer time periods between shopping trips. This helps to protect those who are unable to procure essentials in advance of the pandemic and must shop more frequently. In addition, consider avoiding WIC-labeled products so that those who rely on these products can access them.

  • Do not use electric fans when the temperature outside is more than 95 degrees. You could increase the risk of heat-related illness. Fans create air flow and a false sense of comfort, but do not reduce body temperature.

  • Avoid high-energy activities outdoors. Avoid working outdoors during the midday heat, if possible.

  • Check yourself, family members, and neighbors for signs of heat-related illness and COVID-19. Maintain social distancing between yourself and persons not part of your household.

  • Engage virtually with your community through video and phone calls. Know that it’s normal to feel anxious or stressed. Take care of your body and talk to someone if you are feeling upset. Many people may already feel fear and anxiety about the coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19). The threat of an avalanche can add additional stress. Follow CDC guidance for managing stress during a traumatic event and managing stress during COVID-19.

Recognize and Respond

Know the signs of heat-related illnesses and COVID-19 and ways to respond. At-risk populations for both heat-related illness and COVID-19 include older individuals and those with underlying health conditions. Know how to protect individuals especially at risk from both extreme heat events and COVID-19.

If you are sick and need medical attention, contact your healthcare provider for advice and shelter in place, if you can. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 9-1-1 and let the operator know if you have, or think you might have, COVID-19. If you can, put on a mask before help arrives. If you are at a shelter or public facility, alert shelter staff right away so they can call a local hospital or clinic.

HEAT CRAMPS

  • Signs: Muscle pains or spasms in the stomach, arms or legs

  • Actions: Go to a cooler location. Remove excess clothing. Take sips of cool sports drinks with salt and sugar. If you are sick and need medical attention, call your healthcare provider first. Follow your healthcare provider’s instructions about whether you should go to the hospital or cooler location yourself, as you may be putting others or yourself in greater risk for contracting COVID-19. If cramps last more than an hour, seek medical attention. If possible, put on a mask before medical help arrives.

HEAT EXHAUSTION

  • Signs: Heavy sweating, paleness, muscle cramps, tiredness, weakness, dizziness, headache, fainting, nausea, vomiting

  • Actions: Go to an air-conditioned place and lie down. Loosen or remove clothing. Take a cool bath. Take sips of cool sports drinks with salt and sugar. Call your healthcare provider if symptoms get worse or last more than an hour.

HEAT STROKE

  • Signs:

    • Extremely high body temperature (above 103 degrees) taken orally

    • Red, hot and dry skin with no sweat

    • Rapid, strong pulse

    • Dizziness, confusion or unconsciousness

  • Actions: Call 9-1-1 or get the person to a hospital immediately. Cool down with whatever methods are available until medical help arrives.

COVID-19

  • Signs: A combination of cough and shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fever, chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, and sudden loss of taste or smell

  • Actions: For severe symptoms, call 9-1-1 and let them know you think you may have COVID-19 or may have been exposed to COVID-19. If you can, put on a mask before medical help arrives. If you’re experiencing milder symptoms, consult your medical provider.


Floods

Flooding is a temporary overflow of water onto land that is normally dry. Floods are the most common natural disaster in the United States. Failing to evacuate flooded areas or entering flood waters can lead to injury or death.

Floods may:

  • Result from rain, snow, coastal storms, storm surges and overflows of dams and other water systems.

  • Develop slowly or quickly. Flash floods can come with no warning.

  • Cause outages, disrupt transportation, damage buildings and create landslides.

IF YOU ARE UNDER A FLOOD WARNING, FIND SAFE SHELTER RIGHT AWAY

  • Do not walk, swim or drive through flood waters. Turn Around, Don’t Drown!

    • Just six inches of moving water can knock you down, and one foot of moving water can sweep your vehicle away.

  • Stay off of bridges over fast-moving water.

  • Depending on the type of flooding:

    • Evacuate if told to do so.

    • Move to higher ground or a higher floor.

    • Stay where you are.

HOW TO STAY SAFE WHEN A FLOOD THREATENS

Prepare NOW

  • Make a plan for your household, including your pets, so that you and your family know what to do, where to go, and what you will need to protect yourselves from flooding and COVID-19.

  • Build a “Go Kit” of the supplies you will need if you have to quickly evacuate your home.

  • Know types of flood risk in your area. Visit FEMA’s Flood Map Service Center for information.

  • Sign up for your community’s warning system. The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts. Sign up for email updates and follow the latest guidelines about coronavirus from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and your local authorities to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

  • If flash flooding is a risk in your location monitor potential signs, such as heavy rain.

  • Learn and practice evacuation routes, shelter plans, and flash flood response.

    • If you live in a storm surge flooding zone or a mandatory hurricane evacuation zone, make plans to stay with family and friends. Evacuate to shelters only if you are unable to stay with family and friends. Check with local authorities to determine which public shelters are open. Review your previous evacuation plan and consider alternative options to maintain social and physical distancing to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

    • Don’t forget to include your pet in your emergency plan. Remember that some evacuation shelters do not accept pets.

  • Gather supplies, including non-perishable foods, cleaning supplies, and water for several days, in case you must leave immediately or if services are cut off in your area. The CDC recommends having at least 3 days’ worth of supplies on hand, including one gallon of water per day for each person and pet. If you are able, set aside items like soap, hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol, disinfecting wipes, and general household cleaning supplies that you can use to disinfect surfaces you touch regularly. After a flood, you may not have access to these supplies for days or even weeks. Keep in mind each person’s specific needs, including medication. Don’t forget the needs of pets. Include extra batteries and charging devices for phones and other critical equipment.

    • Being prepared allows you to avoid unnecessary excursions and to address minor medical issues at home, alleviating the burden on urgent care centers and hospitals.

    • Not everyone can afford to respond by stocking up on necessities. If you can, make essential purchases and slowly build up supplies in advance so that you can leave longer time periods between shopping trips. This helps to protect those who are unable to procure essentials in advance of a disaster, like a flood or pandemic, and must shop more frequently. In addition, consider avoiding WIC-approved products so that those who rely on these products can access them.

  • Purchase or renew a flood insurance policy. Homeowner’s policies do not cover flooding. It typically takes up to 30 days for a policy to go into effect so the time to buy is well before a disaster. Get flood coverage under the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).

  • Keep important documents in a waterproof container. Create password-protected digital copies.

  • Protect your property. Move valuables to higher levels. Declutter drains and gutters. Install check valves. Consider a sump pump with a battery.

Survive DURING

  • Depending on where you are, the potential impact, and the warning time given for flooding, go to the safe location that you have identified. If you are not able to shelter in place or with family or friends and must go to a public shelter, remember to bring items that can help protect you and others from COVID-19, such as hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol, cleaning materials, and two cloth masks per person. If you can, wash your face covering regularly. Children under 2 years old, people who have trouble breathing, and those who are unable to remove masks on their own should not wear them.

  • If told to evacuate, do so immediately. Never drive around barricades. Local responders use them to safely direct traffic out of flooded areas.

  • If you are sick and need medical attention, contact your healthcare provider for further care instructions and shelter in place, if possible. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 9-1-1 and let the operator know if you have, or think you might have, COVID-19. If possible, put on a mask before help arrives. If staying at a shelter or public facility, alert shelter staff immediately so they can call a local hospital or clinic.

  • Listen to EAS, NOAA Weather Radio or local alerting systems for current emergency information and instructions regarding flooding and COVID-19.

  • Do not walk, swim or drive through flood waters. Turn Around. Don’t Drown!

  • Stay off bridges over fast-moving water. Fast-moving water can wash bridges away without warning.

  • If your car is trapped in rapidly moving water stay inside. If water is rising inside the car get on the roof.

  • If trapped in a building go to its highest level. Do not climb into a closed attic. You may become trapped by rising floodwater. Only get on the roof if necessary and once there signal for help.

Be Safe AFTER

  • Listen to authorities for information and instructions. Return home only when authorities say it is safe.

  • Avoid driving except in emergencies.

  • Be aware that snakes and other animals may be in your house. Wear heavy work gloves, protective clothing, and boots during clean up. Wear a mask and maintain a physical distance of at least six feet while working with someone else. Use an appropriate mask if cleaning mold or other debris. People with asthma and other lung conditions and/or immune suppression should not enter buildings with indoor water leaks or mold growth that can be seen or smelled. Children should not take part in disaster cleanup work.

  • Be aware of the risk of electrocution. Do not touch electrical equipment if it is wet or if you are standing in water. If it is safe to do so, turn off the electricity to prevent electric shock.

  • Avoid wading in floodwater, which can be contaminated and contain dangerous debris. Underground or downed power lines can also electrically charge the water. There is no evidence that COVID-19 can be transmitted through water; however, you should avoid contact with floodwaters.

  • Continue taking steps to protect yourself from COVID-19 and other infectious diseases, such as washing your hands often and cleaning commonly touched surfaces with disinfecting products.

  • Use a generator or other gasoline-powered machinery ONLY outdoors and away from windows.

  • Engage virtually with your community through video and phone calls. Know that it’s normal to feel anxious or stressed. Take care of your body and talk to someone if you are feeling upset. Many people may already feel fear and anxiety about the coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19). The threat of a flood can add additional stress. Follow CDC guidance for managing stress during a traumatic event and managing stress during COVID-19.


Tsunami

A tsunami can kill or injure people and damage or destroy buildings and infrastructure as waves come in and go out. A tsunami is a series of enormous ocean waves caused by earthquakes, underwater landslides, volcanic eruptions, or asteroids. Tsunamis can:

  • Travel 20-30 miles per hour with waves 10-100 feet high.

  • Cause flooding and disrupt transportation, power, communications, and the water supply.

  • Happen anywhere along U.S. coasts. Coasts that border the Pacific Ocean or Caribbean have the greatest risk.

IF YOU ARE UNDER A TSUNAMI WARNING:

  • First, protect yourself from an Earthquake. Drop, Cover, then Hold On.

  • Get to high ground as far inland as possible. You can protect yourself from a tsunami while also protecting yourself and your family from COVID-19. Protect yourself from the effects of a tsunami by moving from the shore to safe, high grounds outside tsunami hazard areas.

  • Be alert to signs of a tsunami, such as a sudden rise or draining of ocean waters.

  • Listen to emergency information and alerts.

  • Evacuate: DO NOT wait! Leave as soon as you see any natural signs of a tsunami or receive an official tsunami warning.

    • Understand that your regular public shelter may not be open this year as shelter locations may have changed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. CDC, FEMA, and the American Red Cross are advising shelter operators on safety procedures to make sure that shelters can protect people from natural disasters while taking COVID-19 precautions. Check with local authorities for the latest information about public shelters or download the free Red Cross Emergency app for a list of open Red Cross shelters in your area. In addition:

      • Always follow the instructions from local emergency managers. They provide the latest recommendations based on the threat in your community.

      • Make plans to shelter with friends and family, if possible.

      • If you must evacuate to a public shelter, try to bring items that can help protect yourself and your family from COVID-19, such as hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol, cleaning materials, and two masks per person. Children under 2 years old, people who have trouble breathing, and people who cannot remove masks on their own should not wear them. Review the CDC’s guidelines for “Going to a Public Disaster Shelter During the COVID-19 Pandemic.”

      • Maintain a distance of at least six feet between yourself and those who are not part of your household.

  • If you are in a boat, go out to sea.

HOW TO STAY SAFE WHEN A TSUNAMI THREATENS

Prepare NOW

  • If you live near, or regularly visit a coastal area, learn about the risk of tsunami in the area. Some at-risk communities have maps with evacuation zones and routes. If you are a visitor, ask about community plans.

  • Learn the signs of a potential tsunami, such as an earthquake, a loud roar from the ocean, or unusual ocean behavior, such as a sudden rise or wall of water or sudden draining of water showing the ocean floor.

  • Know and practice community evacuation plans and map out your routes from home, work, and play. Pick shelters 100 feet or more above sea level, or at least one mile inland.

  • Create a family emergency communication plan that has an out-of-state contact. Plan where to meet if you get separated.

  • Sign up for your community’s warning system. The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts. Sign up for email updates about COVID-19 from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

  • Consider earthquake insurance and a flood insurance policy through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Standard homeowner’s insurance does not cover flood or earthquake damage.

Survive DURING

  • If you are in a tsunami area and there is an earthquake, then first protect yourself from the earthquake. Drop, Cover, and Hold On. Drop to your hands and knees. Cover your head and neck with your arms. Hold on to any sturdy furniture until the shaking stops. Crawl only if you can reach better cover, but do not go through an area with more debris. If possible, avoid touching your eyes, mouth, and nose, especially after touching high-touch surfaces, to slow the spread of COVID-19.

  • When the shaking stops, if there are natural signs or official warnings of a tsunami, then move immediately to a safe place as high and as far inland as possible. Listen to the authorities, but do not wait for tsunami warnings and evacuation orders.

  • If you are outside of the tsunami hazard zone and receive a warning, then stay where you are unless officials tell you otherwise.

  • Leave immediately if you are told to do so. Evacuation routes are often marked by a wave with an arrow in the direction of higher ground.

  • If you are in the water, then grab onto something that floats, such as a raft, tree trunk, or door. There is no evidence that COVID-19 can be spread through water, however floodwaters may contain debris, chemicals, or waste that are harmful to your health.

  • If you are in a boat, then face the direction of the waves and head out to sea. If you are in a harbor, then go inland.

Be Safe AFTER

  • Listen to local alerts and authorities for information on areas to avoid and shelter locations.

  • Avoid wading in floodwater, which can contain dangerous debris. Water may be deeper than it appears.

  • Be aware of the risk of electrocution. Underground or downed power lines can electrically charge water. Do not touch electrical equipment if it is wet or if you are standing in water.

  • If you become injured or sick and need medical attention, contact your healthcare provider for further care instructions and shelter in place, if possible. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 9-1-1 and let the operator know if you have, or think you might have, COVID-19. If possible, put on a mask before help arrives. If staying at a shelter or public facility, alert shelter staff immediately so they can call a local hospital or clinic.

  • Stay away from damaged buildings, roads, and bridges.

  • Document property damage with photographs. Conduct an inventory and contact your insurance company for assistance.

  • Save phone calls for emergencies. Phone systems are often down or busy after a disaster. Use text messages or social media to communicate with family and friends.

  • Engage virtually with your community through video and phone calls. Know that it’s normal to feel anxious or stressed. Take care of your body and talk to someone if you are feeling upset. Many people may already feel fear and anxiety about the coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19). The threat of a tsunami can add additional stress. Follow CDC guidance for managing stress during a traumatic event and managing stress during COVID-19.


Wildfires

Wildfires are unplanned fires that burn in natural areas like forests, grasslands or prairies. These dangerous fires spread quickly and can devastate not only wildfire and natural areas, but also communities.

Prepare for Wildfires

Recognize Warnings and Alerts

  • Have several ways to receive alerts. Download the FEMA app and receive real-time alerts from the National Weather Service for up to five locations nationwide. Sign up for community alerts in your area and be aware of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) and Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA)- which requires no-sign up.

  • Sign up for email updates and follow the latest guidelines about coronavirus from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and your local authorities to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

  • Pay attention to air quality alerts.

Make an Emergency Plan

Review Important Documents

Strengthen your Home

  • Use fire-resistant materials to build, renovate or make repairs.

  • Find an outdoor water source with a hose that can reach any area of your property.

  • Create a fire-resistant zone that is free of leaves, debris or flammable materials for at least 30 feet from your home.

  • Designate a room that can be closed off from outside air. Close all doors and windows. Set up a portable air cleaner to keep indoor pollution levels low when smoky conditions exist.

Know your Evacuation Zone

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  • You may have to evacuate quickly due to a wildfire. Learn your evacuation routes, practice with household, pets, and identify where you will go.

  • If you must evacuate to a public shelter, try to bring items that can help protect you and others in the shelter from COVID-19, such as hand sanitizer, cleaning materials, and two masks per person. Children under 2 years old and people who have trouble breathing should not wear masks.

  • Follow the instructions from local authorities. They will provide the latest recommendations based on the threat to your community and appropriate safety measures.

  • Review the CDC’s guidelines for “Going to a Public Disaster Shelter During the COVID-19 Pandemic.”

Gather Supplies

  • Have enough supplies for your household, include medication, disinfectant supplies, masks, pet supplies in your go bag or car trunk. Being prepared allows you to address smaller medical issues at home, alleviating the burden on urgent care centers and hospitals.

    • Being prepared allows you to avoid unnecessary excursions and to address minor medical issues at home, alleviating the burden on urgent care centers and hospitals.

    • Remember that not everyone can afford to respond by stocking up on necessities. For those who can afford it, making essential purchases and slowly building up supplies in advance will allow for longer time periods between shopping trips. This helps to protect those who are unable to procure essentials in advance of the pandemic and must shop more frequently. In addition, consider avoiding WIC-labeled products so that those who rely on these products can access them.

    • If you already have one at home, set aside a respirator, like an N95 respirator, to keep smoke particles out of the air you breathe. Respirators are not meant to fit children. Due to COVID-19, it may be difficult to find respirators. While cloth masks, surgical masks, and dust masks provide protection from exposure to COVID-19, they will not protect you from smoke inhalation. To ensure that healthcare workers have access to N95 respirators, it is best to limit your exposure to smoke rather than buy respirators.

  • Be cautious when carrying flammable or combustible household products that can cause fires or explosions if handled wrong, such as aerosols, cooking oils, rubbing alcohol, and hand sanitizer.

  • If you already have an N95 mask, use this to protect yourself from smoke inhalation. N95 masks also protect against the spread of COVID-19, however they should be reserved for healthcare workers. If are in a public cleaner air space or shelter, use a mask to help slow the spread of COVID-19.

  • Keep your cell phone charged when wildfires could be in your area. Purchase backup charging devices to power electronics.

Stay Safe During

  • Evacuate immediately if authorities tell you to do so!

    • Due to limited space as a result of COVID-19, public cleaner air shelters and cleaner air spaces may not be the safest choice for you and your family. In addition, note that your regular cleaner air shelter and cleaner air space may not be open this year. Check with local authorities for the latest information about public shelters or download the free Red Cross Emergency app for a list of open Red Cross shelters in your area. In addition:

      • Consider making plans with friends or family to shelter with them where you may be safer and more comfortable.

      • If you must evacuate to a public shelter, try to bring items that can help protect you and others in the shelter from COVID-19, such as hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol, cleaning materials, and two masks per person. Masks should not be worn by children under 2 years old, people who have trouble breathing, and people who are unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the mask. Be prepared to be screened for COVID-19 upon arrival.

      • While at a public shelter, maintain a distance of at least six feet between yourself and those who are not part of your household. Review the CDC’s guidelines for “Going to a Public Disaster Shelter During the COVID-19 Pandemic.”

  • If possible, bring items with you when you evacuate that can help protect you and others from COVID-19 while sheltering. Examples include hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol, cleaning materials, and two cloth masks per person to prevent the spread of infection.

  • If trapped, then call 911 and give your location, but be aware that emergency response could be delayed or impossible. Turn on lights to help rescuers find you.

  • Pay attention to emergency alerts and notifications for information and instructions.

  • Use an N95 mask to protect yourself from smoke inhalation.

    • If you already have one at home, use a respirator, like an N95 respirator, to keep smoke particles out of the air you breathe. Respirators are not meant to fit children. Due to COVID-19, it may be difficult to find respirators. While cloth masks, surgical masks, and dust masks provide protection from exposure to COVID-19, they will not protect you from smoke inhalation. To ensure that healthcare workers have access to N95 respirators, it is best to limit your exposure to smoke rather than buy respirators. If you do not already have N95 respirators, you can reduce your exposure to smoke by doing the following:

      • Choose a room to close off from outside air and set up a portable air cleaner or filter to keep the air in this room clean even when it’s smoky in the rest of the building and outdoors.

      • Use high efficiency filters in your central air conditioning system to capture fine particles from smoke. If your system has fresh air intake, set the system to “recirculate” mode and close the outdoor intake damper.

      • Avoid using anything that burns, such as candles and fireplaces. Do not vacuum, as vacuuming stirs up particles already inside your home. Do not smoke tobacco or other products. Smoking puts even more pollution into the air.

    • If you are not ordered to evacuate but smoky conditions exist, stay inside in a safe location or go to a community building where smoke levels are lower.

    • Pay attention to any health symptoms if you have asthma, COPD, heart disease, or are pregnant. If you are sick and need medical attention, contact your healthcare provider for further care instructions and shelter in place, if possible. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 9-1-1 and let the operator know if you have, or think you might have, COVID-19. If possible, put on a cloth fae covering before help arrives. If staying at a shelter or public facility, alert shelter staff immediately so they can call a local hospital or clinic.

Returning Home After a Wildfire

  • Do not return home until authorities say it is safe to do so.

  • Avoid hot ash, charred trees, smoldering debris, and live embers. The ground may contain heat pockets that can burn you or spark another fire. Use appropriate masks or respirators and maintain a physical distance of at least six feet while working with someone else to protect yourself from COVID-19. When cleaning up ash, use a respirator to limit your exposure.

  • When cleaning, wear protective clothing, including a long-sleeved shirt, long pants, work gloves, appropriate cloth face coverings or masks, and sturdy thick-soled shoes during clean-up efforts.

  • Use appropriate masks or respirators.

  • When cleaning up ash, use a respirator to limit your exposure and wet debris to minimize breathing dust particles

    • People with asthma and/or other lung conditions should take precautions in areas with poor air quality, as it can worsen symptoms. Children should not help with clean-up efforts.

    • Pay attention to any health symptoms if you or your children have asthma, COPD, heart disease, or are pregnant. Get to medical help if you need it.

  • Document property damage with photographs. Conduct an inventory and contact your insurance company for assistance.

  • Continue taking steps to protect yourself from COVID-19 and other infectious diseases, such as washing your hands often and cleaning commonly touched surfaces.

  • Send text messages or use social media to reach out to family and friends. Phone systems are often busy following a disaster. Make calls only in emergencies.

  • Engage virtually with your community through video and phone calls. Know that it’s normal to feel anxious or stressed. Take care of your body and talk to someone if you are feeling upset. Many people may already feel fear and anxiety about the coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19). The threat of a wildfire can add additional stress. Follow CDC guidance for managing stress during a traumatic event and managing stress during COVID-19.


Winter Weather

Winter storms create a higher risk of car accidents, hypothermia, frostbite, carbon monoxide poisoning, and heart attacks from overexertion. Winter storms including blizzards can bring extreme cold, freezing rain, snow, ice and high winds.

A winter storm can:

Last a few hours or several days.

Cut off heat, power and communication services.

Put older adults, children, sick individuals and pets at greater risk.

How to Protect Yourself from Winter Weather

IF YOU ARE UNDER A WINTER STORM WARNING, FIND SHELTER RIGHT AWAY

Know your winter weather terms:

Winter Storm Warning

Issued when hazardous winter weather in the form of heavy snow, heavy freezing rain, or heavy sleet is imminent or occurring. Winter Storm Warnings are usually issued 12 to 24 hours before the event is expected to begin.

Winter Storm Watch

Alerts the public to the possibility of a blizzard, heavy snow, heavy freezing rain, or heavy sleet. Winter Storm Watches are usually issued 12 to 48 hours before the beginning of a Winter Storm.

Winter Weather Advisory

Issued for accumulations of snow, freezing rain, freezing drizzle, and sleet which will cause significant inconveniences and, if caution is not exercised, could lead to life-threatening situations.

Know Your Risk for Winter Storms

Pay attention to weather reports and warnings of freezing weather and winter storms. Listen for emergency information and alerts. Sign up for your community’s warning system. The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts.

Preparing for Winter Weather

Prepare your home to keep out the cold with insulation, caulking and weather stripping. Learn how to keep pipes from freezing. Install and test smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors with battery backups. Gather supplies in case you need to stay home for several days without power. Keep in mind each person’s specific needs, including medication. Remember the needs of your pets. Have extra batteries for radios and flashlights.

In Case of Emergency

Be prepared for winter weather at home, at work and in your car. Create an emergency supply kit for your car. Include jumper cables, sand, a flashlight, warm clothes, blankets, bottled water and non-perishable snacks. Keep a full tank of gas.

Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

Sign up for email updates about coronavirus from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Learn the symptoms of COVID-19 and follow CDC guidance. If you are able to, set aside items like soap, hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol, disinfecting wipes, and general household cleaning supplies that you can use to disinfect surfaces you touch regularly

Stay Safe During Winter Weather

Avoid carbon monoxide poisoning. Only use generators and grills outdoors and away from windows. Never heat your home with a gas stovetop or oven.

  • Stay off roads if at all possible. If trapped in your car, then stay inside.

  • Limit your time outside. If you need to go outside, then wear layers of warm clothing. Watch for signs of frostbite and hypothermia.

  • Reduce the risk of a heart attack by avoiding overexertion when shoveling snow and walking in the snow.

Learn the signs of, and basic treatments for, frostbite and hypothermia.

Frostbite causes loss of feeling and color around the face, fingers and toes.

  • Signs: Numbness, white or grayish-yellow skin, firm or waxy skin.

  • Actions: Go to a warm room. Soak in warm water. Use body heat to warm. Do not massage or use a heating pad.

Hypothermia is an unusually low body temperature. A temperature below 95 degrees is an emergency.

  • Signs: Shivering, exhaustion, confusion, fumbling hands, memory loss, slurred speech or drowsiness.

  • Actions: Go to a warm room. Warm the center of the body first—chest, neck, head and groin. Keep dry and wrapped up in warm blankets, including the head and neck.


Emergency Alerts

When emergencies strike, public safety officials use timely and reliable systems to alert you. This page describes different warning alerts you can get and how to get them.

Wireless Emergency Alerts

Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEAs) are just one of the ways public safety officials can quickly and effectively alert the public to serious emergencies.

What you need to know about WEAs:

  • WEAs can be sent by state and local public safety officials, the National Weather Service, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and the president of the United States.

  • WEAs look like text messages but are designed to get your attention with a unique sound and vibration repeated twice.

  • WEAs are no more than 360 characters and include the type and time of the alert, any action you should take and the agency issuing the alert.

  • WEAs are not affected by network congestion and will not disrupt texts, calls or data sessions that are in progress.

  • You are not charged for receiving WEAs and there is no need to subscribe.

If you are not receiving Wireless Emergency Alerts here are some tips to troubleshoot your mobile device:

  1. Check the settings on your mobile phones and review your user manual (you may be able to find this online too).

    • Older phones may not be WEA capable.

    • Some mobile service providers call these messages “Government Alerts,” or “Emergency Alert Messages.”

  2. Check with your wireless providers to see if they can resolve the issue.

To provide comments or concerns about a WEA sent in your area contact local officials directly.

Emergency Alert System

  • The Emergency Alert System (EAS) is a national public warning system that allows the president to address the American people within 10 minutes during a national emergency. The alerts are sent through broadcasters, satellite digital audio services, direct broadcast satellite providers, cable television systems and wireless cable systems.

  • The EAS may also be used by state and local authorities to deliver important emergency information such as weather information, imminent threats, AMBER alerts and local incident information targeted to specific areas.

  • The president has sole responsibility for determining when the national-level EAS will be activated. FEMA is responsible for national-level EAS tests and exercises.

  • The EAS is also used when all other means of alerting the public are unavailable.

NOAA Weather Radio

NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards (NWR) is a nationwide network of radio stations that broadcast continuous weather information from the nearest National Weather Service office based on your physical location.

  • NWR broadcasts official warnings, watches, forecasts and other hazard information 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

  • NWR also broadcasts alerts of non-weather emergencies such as national security or public safety threats through the Emergency Alert System.