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Emergency planning can feel overwhelming. We’ve broken it down into simple steps and provided tools that will make it feel doable. The same connections that are important in everyday life—with friends, family, neighbors, and communities — are even more crucial in a crisis.

Make a plan with your people.

Set up your meet up.

First, make a plan with your inner circle of friends, relatives, or immediate family. That way, you will each know what to do in an emergency.

What basics does your plan need to include?

  • Select a few of your nearest and dearest. Who’s the group you’ll want to get in touch with if something happens?
  • Pick an out of state contact. Who can serve as a hub for information, if you can’t reach others in your local area?
  • Agree on a place to meet. How about a park? A landmark? Don’t choose a house—in case it’s inaccessible.

Learn tips.

Read and print our Hurricane Guide to learn a few easy steps to stay safe. For in-depth information checkout

  1. Know the Plan

    Gather and organize supplies (essentials, useful, and personal items to help you weather the storm) and make a family communications plan for what to do in a hurricane.

  2. Learn your evacuation route.

    Learn evacuation routes and how to find a safe location. Determine where you would go and how you would get there if you needed to evacuate.

  3. Secure your home.

    Secure your home, close storm shutters, and secure outdoor objects or bring them indoors.

  1. Listen for Updates

    Listen to a NOAA Weather Radio or local news for critical information from the National Weather Service. Be alert to changing weather conditions and follow official instructions.

  2. Turn off Utilities

    Turn off utilities and propane tanks if instructed to do so. Otherwise, turn the refrigerator to its coldest setting and keep its doors closed (here's how to keep food safe during and after an emergency).

  3. Save a Supply of Water.

    Ensure you have a supply of water for sanitary purposes such as cleaning and flushing toilets. Fill the bathtub and large containers with water.

  1. Find your family.

    If you are separated from your family, use your family communications plan, contact the American Red Cross (ARC) at 1-800-RED-CROSS/1-800-733-2767 or visit the ARC Safe and Well site:

  2. Inspect your home for damage.

    Take pictures of damage (both of the building and its contents) for insurance purposes. If safety is a concern, have your residence inspected by a building inspector or structural engineer before entering.

  3. Practice Fire Safety.

    Use battery-powered flashlights in the dark. DO NOT use candles, in order to prevent fires.