In addition to the recently published Navy Personnel and Family Hurricane Checklist, the Naval Safety Center‘s Derek Nelson has some other bits of wisdom to pass on to you and your shipmates, family, neighbors, friends and anyone else you want to stay safe in this storm season.
We’ve been lucky thus far with fairly little Hurricane action this year but as Tropical Storm Isaac nears the Gulf coast and the National Hurricane Center predicting it may soon become a Hurricane, we want to make sure all coastal Navy personnel and their family members know what steps they must take.
- Make an emergency supply kit – see our previous blog for things to include or visit FEMA’s Ready site (http://www.ready.gov/hurricanes)
- Have a plan – Talk to your family about what they are to do in the event of an emergency situation. Don’t forget about your pets (http://www.ready.gov/caring-animals)
- Make sure your information is updated within NFAAS (https://navyfamily.navy.mil/). As Navy families, we are often transplanted and often the paper trail doesn’t make the move at the same time as your personal belongings. If you haven’t signed into NFAAS and reviewed your information recently, it’s probably a good idea to do that TONIGHT. (You are required to do it every 6 months as a minimum.)
During the Storm:
- Stay abreast of storm trajectory, base communications and the news. Periodically check your command’s webpage or social media sites (Twitter, Facebook, etc.) which are often good places to connect with leadership or people in the same situation as you. If your Command does not have working or updated sites, or even if they do, don’t forget about larger Navy accounts like Naval Safety Center’s Twitter (@NSC_Updates) and US Navy’s Twitter account (@USNavy) and their corresponding Facebook pages.
- Don’t go out in mid-storm to check for damage, like a commander did a couple years ago. It was raining and pitch dark, with winds between 70 and 110 knots. He found some damage—on the bottom on his leg, where his foot and ankle got smacked by a piece of airborne fence.
- In the event of an evacuation, you are required to check into NFAAS and update any necessary information. You will need to report your accounting status, complete a needs assessment and update any contact information that may have changed.