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Wednesday, October 22, 2014

What to do During a Category 2 Hurricane

By the RestorationSOS Educational Staff

Category 2 storms are obviously more severe than Category 1, but still far from being the strongest hurricanes that may develop. Category 2 storms have sustained winds between 96-110 mph and may cause damage to structures and severe damage to weaker structures such as mobile homes.

Vegetation, road signs, billboards, and piers may experience considerable damage, and small crafts in unprotected anchorages may break loose from their moorings. There may also be near-total power outages that can last for a period of several days. The last recorded Category 2 storm to make landfall was Hurricane Alex in 2010.

Category 2 storms bring torrential rains, storm surge, and flooding that may extend for many miles inland. They also bring the increased probability of evacuation of neighborhoods close to the coastline, so residents living there are advised to have an evacuation plan in place and be prepared to execute it. Moving to higher ground and carrying enough provisions to last for an extended stay away from home.

Each family member (including pets) should have a "go bag" prepared, equipped with changes of clothing, bottled water, non-perishable food, battery-powered radio, extra batteries and a supply of cash (remember that ATMs and credit card machines will not work if the power is out).

Steps You Can Take for a Category 2 Storm

Be ready to properly fortify your home against the storm by boarding up windows and doors with plywood. Some people opt for the installation of storm shutters that remain on the home year round. The roof should also be reinforced to withstand the high winds generated by a Category 2 hurricane since roofs are the most easily damaged part of any structure during storms of this magnitude.

Garage doors are also particularly susceptible to damage from high winds due to their size and the ease with which they can be ripped off their tracks. Retrofit kits are available that can help strengthen garages, and some areas of the country have mandates requiring that garage doors be adequately reinforced to withstand high velocity winds.

If you live in a mobile or manufactured home, you are at greater risk. Be prepared to evacuate, shut off all electricity and gas servicing the home, and remove and tape up all mirrors. Anchor down propane tanks and properly store away all outdoor items such as awnings, lawn furniture, and trash cans.

With Category 2 storms comes the increased risk of flash flooding. Be aware of your surroundings during any evacuation and do not attempt to cross any road where floodwaters are flowing. The road may not even be there anymore and you may find yourself and your family swept away, trapped in your vehicle.

Category 2 storms are very dangerous weather events. Treat them as such. With proper preparation, you can survive the storm with your property and family intact.

Recommended Reading
What to do During a Category 1 Hurricane
What to do During a Category 3 Hurricane

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