Starting today June 1st and continuing through November 30th is the Atlantic Hurricane Season and with this year’s predictions from various sources calling for an above average Hurricane season we are taking this time to post some points for you to consider regarding preparedness and monitoring the weather.
Starting with preparedness – Some of the things that our recent pandemic illustrates is that FEMA is a back up service to state and local governments and most importantly preparedness is a continuing process. For example many organizations did not have N95 masks and to wait to get some from FEMA or they had masks and other supplies that were stock piled when the Avian Flu appeared in the early 2000’s and they found many of rubber components failed. Nobody wants to open sealed boxes but had they checked their supplies regularly they would have been better prepared. When food or other supplies have expiration dates it is important to make note of them, also other supplies and equipment that don’t have expiration dates should be marked with a date and checked at least annually. Rubber along with other synthetic materials degenerate with exposure to air, sunlight, and time.
As we have pointed out before on this website no level of government can have enough shelters, supplies and equipment to cover everyone in the area so community preparedness is only as good as collective preparedness of the individuals in the community. Preparedness begins at home. Below are some of the locations where you can find information on preparations needed for various events.
(1) http://ready.northwildwood.com This link will take you to the “Be Prepared” page of this website which contains links for the Hurricane Survival Guide, Evacuation Routes, New Jersey Ready website, National Ready website , Tsunami, Winter storm, Tornado, CDC Emergency Preparedness information and lastly the link for NJ Register Ready is New Jersey’s Special Needs Registry for Disasters.
(2) The NWOEM Brochure link on the left hand side of this page will take you to a .pdf copy of the brochure that North Wildwood Office of Emergency Management put together several years ago. Copies are available at the City Clerks office if you need a hard copy.
A key to any effective preparedness is to have a general idea when you will need to use the things you collected to be prepared. Weather is our largest concern when it comes to frequency and damages. One good thing about weather is that it is monitored by the National Weather Service which generates weather forecasts. Even the unexpected tornado or flooding from rain has some advanced notice. Below we list some of the weather resources that we check regularly. We hope that you make it a daily habit to check the weather.
(1) National Weather Service forecast for North Wildwood This link will take you to the 7 day forecast for North Wildwood. The key things to pay attention to is a red bar with the words Hazardous Weather Conditions with links under it for the Hazardous Weather Outlook and any other hazardous weather such as thunderstorms warnings, rip tides, flooding, etc. You need to click on the link which takes you to the text based forecast which spells out what to expect. This is where you find tide heights in flood watches, and rain fall amounts. Those that want to learn more check out the portion of the page marked “Additional Forecasts and Information” area where you find the forecast discussion and other information in detail.
(2) As Weather systems in the United States generally move from West to East it is helpful to see what the weather is on a map of the United States. One of the best ways to check the nations weather is to check the National Weather Service Daily Briefing. In addition to the national weather map the Daily Briefing is full of information and links to other weather resources.
(3) The National Hurricane Center is the website to check whenever there is a report of tropical weather forming. The NHC is the source of all hurricane forecasting that all the other weather reporters use. Remember to click on the tropical depression or storm to get detailed information on wind speeds, storm direction and future projections.
(4) While the National Hurricane Center shows their official forecast a website that shows all the forecast models that are taken into consideration when weather forecasts are made is Tropical Tidbits. On the top of the page are links for current storms, forecast models, etc. Much of the stuff is forecast models not a final forecast – Models are the consensus of a group of weather forecasters believe will take place. From the models you can understand why we may get weather different than what the local forecaster is calling for. For Hurricanes you will see various paths a hurricane may take and when several of the models are close to each other then most likely that will be the final path. Tropical Tidbits is can also be used for all weather as you can put a model into actions showing predicted rain or snow coming our way. The website has a lot of information and after you get used to using it you will be able to have the heads up on possible future weather which aids in preparedness.
(5) The next is Windy.com is a website that has a lot of features, many of which are on the Tropical Tidbits website however everything is in interactive graphics. It will take a little while to get used to the page as there is many of layers of information that is available which can be turned on or off. Once you are comfortable with using the website you can then get future weather by using the slider at the bottom of the page and you can select different forecast models on the lower right side.
There are other website out there that you might like better. If you only want the forecast for our area then stick to the local National Weather Service Forecast. It is clear and simple however if you want to get a better understanding of the weather take a few moments and check out the other websites. For real time alerts consider a Weather Radio or Weather APP for your smart phone.