You are using an outdated browser. Please upgrade your browser to improve your experience.

Hurricane Irma - Red Cross Issues Safety and Preparedness Tips

Hurricane Preparedness

The American Red Cross urges extreme caution and safety as Hurricane Irma approaches. Key hurricane and flood safety tips are provided for people to follow as they prepare for this powerful storm.

Hurricane Safety

Key safety steps to use for this disaster:

  • Continue listening to local area radio, NOAA radio or TV stations for the latest information and updates.
  • Build an emergency kit that contains supplies for about three days. This should include a gallon of water per person per day, non-perishable food, a flashlight and extra batteries, a first aid kit, medications and copies of important documents. Remember items for young children such as diapers, and family members with special medical needs.
  • Follow evacuation orders and do not attempt to return until officials say it is safe to do so.
  • You can find a shelter by visiting redcross.org or by downloading the free Red Cross Emergency App. The Emergency App also puts real time information about the storm and hurricane safety tips at your fingertips. The app is available in app stores by searching for the American Red Cross or going to redcross.org/apps.

  • Don’t forget your pets. Bring them indoors and maintain direct control of them. Prepare an emergency kit for your pets, including sturdy leashes or pet carriers, food and water, bowls, cat litter and pan and photos of you with your pet in case they get lost. Additional pet safety tips are available.
  • Find more information on preparedness on redcross.org.
  • Safe and Well

    The American Red Cross Safe and Well website is a free public reunification tool that allows individuals and organizations to register and post messages to indicate that they are safe, or to search for loved ones. The site is always available and open to the public and available in Spanish. Registrations and searches can be done directly on the website. Registrations can also be completed by texting SAFE to 78876. Messages exist in both Spanish and English. To speak with someone at the American Red Cross concerning a missing friend or relative, please contact 1-800 Red Cross.

    Flood Safety

    Areas affected by Hurricane Irma could potentially face flooding. Here are some things to remember:

  • Turn around, don’t drown. Stay off the roads. If you must drive and encounter a flooded roadway while driving, turn around and go another way.
  • If you are caught on a flooded road and waters are rising rapidly around you, get out of the car quickly and move to higher ground. Most cars can be swept away by less than two feet of moving water.
  • Head for higher ground and stay there.
  • Stay away from floodwaters. If you come upon a flowing stream where water is above your ankles, stop, turn around and go another way.
  • Keep children out of the water.
  • Be especially cautious at night when it’s harder to see flood danger.
  • Continue listening to local area radio, NOAA radio or TV stations for the latest information and updates.
  • If your neighborhood is prone to flooding, be prepared to evacuate quickly if necessary.
  • Follow evacuation orders and do not attempt to return until officials say it is safe to do so.
  • About the American Red Cross:

    The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.