Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Preparations for Hurricanes in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands; Issac Is On His Way

Each year I find myself making preparations for hurricanes in St. Thomas. Although we rarely are hit directly. We are often brushed or just dodge major hurricanes. Isaac is currently on his way. There are several levels of preparation, my lists are as follows.

Long Term Preparations for Hurricanes in St. Thomas:

1. As I list properties, I make note of properties with owners living off island, and which ones I am responsible for closing up in the event of a storm.
2. For those that have generators, I have them serviced annually and ensure an adequate supply of fuel is on hand.
3. Have brush and trees trimmed away from the homes, especially in July.
4. Make arrangements to have each location scheduled with a service for shuttering in the event of a storm. These services usually include the relocating of outdoor furniture inside or having it stored.
5. Always be nice to your neighbors and friends, you will no doubt need them at some point.

Short term preparations for hurricane in St. Thomas, starts around June of every year:

1. Ensure the area around homes and building is clear of debris and anything that could become a missile should winds get high enough. Things like lawn furniture, yard art, gardening tools, potted plants, mobiles, building materials, bird feeders and the like, all need to be addressed. This inspired me to clear out my carport today.
2. I suggest to friends, customers and clients to bookmark sites that help to click here keep you informed, this site includes maps, projections, blogs. The blogs have links to other informative and click here interesting sites that actually have pictures of the storm as it develops (I don't know how long this link will be good, probably until the storm passes).
2a. A subscription everyone making preparations for hurricanes  in St. Thomas should have is to click here VI Alert. This service keeps you informed of all kinds of emergency information via e-mail. It could be power outages, flash floods,hurricanes, which shelters will be open during the storm and the like.

3. Monitor these sources regularly and make your decisions regarding preparations for hurricanes in St. Thomas based on information they supply. Also check with friends and co-workers.

4. stock up on water, food, fuel, cash, flash lights, batteries and prescription medication. Pack a spare set of clothes and your medicines in a water tight bag and store them in your safe spot (where you will weather the storm should it get really bad). This is normally a place composed of mostly concrete with few or no windows.
4. Shutter your dwelling, even if you think the storm is going to be mild. Better safe than sorry. Those people who were on island during Hurricane Maryland some Nineteen years ago (the last very destructive hurricane to hit St. Thomas)were told is was going to be a mild storm (category 1). It gained momentum in the few hours before it hit island and cause a lot of damage. Some say it turned out to be a category 4 or more storm. Some of the destruction can be related to lack of preparation.

When making preparations for hurricanes in St. Thomas, do not make national/International news services your source of information. They tend not to mention islands as small as St. Thomas, and you would get the impression that you don't have to make any preparations. They cater to the larger population areas, ratings are their life's blood. We literally don't hit their radar.

Even if you don't live here, but are interested in seeing what it would be like to click here  own property here or have family living here these are good sites to be aware of and to monitor. Knowledge is power and the best preparation for Hurricanes in St. Thomas.

Something I did not discover while preparing to move to the Virgin Islands is there are a fair amount of tremors here, the activity results from a fault that is under the Caribbean Sea between St.Croix and St. Thomas. The sea absorbs a lot of the motion but you do feel it and sometimes you will hear it. But that is a topic for another blog.

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