Hurricane and Tropical Storm Season

September 5, 2017, 7:00 am

Hurricane season for the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, the Caribbean, and the Gulf of Mexico will last through November 2017, with most storms developing between May and October.  

Hurricane Harvey made landfall on August 25, 2017 at the Texas coast as a Category 4 storm. This was the strongest hurricane to make landfall in 12 years; causing significant structural damage, severe flooding and recent reports state 66 deaths (1 in Guyana).

In the Caribbean, Hurricane Irma has strengthened to a Category 5 hurricane, with winds measuring at 187mph (the National Hurricane Center states category 5 hurricane winds typically measure at 157 mph), and is expected to make landfall in the Leeward Islands, Puerto Rico, and Cuba within the next 24 – 48 hours; models are projecting Irma to make it to Puerto Rico Wednesday, September 6. It's too early to tell how and whether the storm will affect the US mainland, but current forecast tracks show it could turn toward Florida over the weekend (CNN).

The U.S. State Department has posted an Emergency Alert on their website regarding Hurricane Irma and is urging individuals to avoid travel to the Bahamas, Turks and Caicos, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Cuba, and parts of the eastern Caribbean. 

Tropical Storm Jose, named 05 September, more than 1,000 miles east of the Lesser Antilles. Many models are showing the storm to gain strength and become a hurricane by the end of the week.

For those who are in the path of a hurricane or tropical storm, it is important to be prepared for significant damage to structures and the loss of electricity and running water.

Resources

Travel Advice for Hurricane and Tropical Storm Season

  • Travelers should apprise family and friends of their whereabouts, and keep in close contact with their tour operator, hotel staff, and local officials for evacuation instructions.
  • Know where to go. If you are ordered to evacuate, know the local hurricane evacuation route(s) to take and have a plan for where you can stay.
  • If you are not in an area that is advised to evacuate and you decide to stay in your home, plan for adequate supplies in case you lose power and water for several days and you are not able to leave due to flooding or blocked roads.
  • Keep an emergency supplies kit:
    • Water
    • Non-perishable food
    • Battery powered radio
    • Flashlight(s) with extra batteries
    • First aid kit
    • Cell phone charger

As always, if you are abroad and in need of immediate assistance (medical or security related) please call International SOS at 215-942-8059 or UTPD at 512-471-4441.