1. Make A Plan

Planning Should Take Place Before a Storm Threatens

It is important for you to know what to do in case of an emergency. Your personal plan of action details who does what, where you go, and what you take along. Hurricane season begins runs from June 1 through November 30. 

Adapting the following plans will better prepare you for a storm situation:

  • Determine your destination (to a relative, friend, motel, hotel, or public shelter).
  • Keep your car tuned up: tires, brakes, oil, etc. 
  • On a map, outline the quickest and safest route needed to get to your destination. Leave plenty of time to get to the destination before a storm strikes. Do not travel during a storm.
  • Register those in your family who needs special assistance for a county special needs program.
  • If you have a pet, you may want to register it at a pet-friendly shelter if you need to evacuate the area. Pet information.
  • Review your insurance policies and coverage.
  • Take photos and/or video footage of your property. Store this information with your important papers. Make copies of the documents and photographs and leave them with someone you trust.
  • Visually inspect your home and property. Make any repairs necessary (check the roof for loose shingles; the gutters and drains to ensure proper drainage; trees for loose branches; the grounds for debris or items such as lawn furniture that could blow away).
  • Purchase plywood, rope, extra nails, and tarps for protecting windows and doors.
  • Prepare an Emergency Supply Kit.
  • Learn where important switches and shut-off valves for gas, electricity, water, and other services are in your home.
  • If you are going to shelter in place, make sure your home has shutters and other protective measures that you may need to utilize in case of disaster.
  • Identify a safe area in the interior of your home without windows for you and your family to shelter in place. 

When planning, consider the special needs of children, seniors, people with disabilities, and pets.  

Stay or Go?

When planning, the important decision is whether you stay where you are or evacuate. If Monroe County Emergency Management issues mandatory evacuations, please leave the County for your safety and the safety of your family and pets.

You should plan for both possibilities. Use common sense and remember all of the Keys are vulnerable to flooding. In an emergency, local authorities may or may not immediately be able to provide information on what is happening and what you should do. You should check this Emergency Management website, follow the Monroe County BOCC Facebook page, follow Monroe County’s Twitter account, watch Monroe County TV, watch local news stations, and listen to the radio for information or official instruction as it becomes available.