In-Depth: Don't miss important steps in hurricane, disaster planning

Posted at 5:55 PM, May 31, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-01 00:00:05-04

Mayra Delgado knows hurricanes better than most, and she knows how to prepare.

" I'm prepared. I'm from an island. I'm from Cuba so we are so used to, to be prepared in case of any disaster," Delgado said.

The island right in the middle of the Caribbean has become ground zero for lots of serious storms.

When the hurricane season kicks off with two storms in different regions, almost two weeks ahead of schedule.

Bell County's emergency management coordinator calls resourcefulness, a great skill.

"There's two storms in the ocean right now, does it bother me? Well, certainly it is unusual, and we're predicted to have a busy season this year," said Bell County Emergency Management Coordinator Michael Harmon.

That's why he never stops preaching preparation.

Just as the Texas Deep Freeze caught most of us unprepared. Some worry its tropical counterpart might also catch us off guard. The winter storm. If we get a major tropical system. Those two are comparable," said 25 News Chief Meteorologist Matt Hines.

That's why Harmon wants us to have three days of supplies on hand like food, water, and medicine.

He says FEMA may put a temporary roof over our heads, but it's up to us to get back on our feet.

"FEMA is not designed to make you whole. It's designed to help you survive, for you to be made whole. You need good homeowners or renter's insurance," said Harmon. M

Protect not only your cell phone, but its contents. How? The old-fashioned way.

"Have a hard copy of the phonebook from your cell phone. So, you have a ready reference for all the important numbers that you need," said Harmon.

Why? Because you don't need batteries or a charger.

Something fairly new, Mr. Harmon says the Federal Emergency Management Agency has begun to move away from big, crowded mass shelters, like the ones you might find at the Bell County Expo Center, in favor of more flexible accommodations in hotels and motels.

Bryan and College Station normally see hotels fill up with evacuees from Houston, while Temple seems to get plenty of takers for its ample accommodations.

Wherever you go, wherever you end up, make sure you tell family members.

"Tell your friends and family where you plan to evacuate, that takes a lot of stress off them and you have less to worry about," said Harmon.

Things our hurricane expert Mayra Delgado knows well. She's not just prepared. She's "super-prepared".

"We go over all the food and everything we needed in case there's any emergency. How many days could we get by before we need help? Ah, like a month," Delgaod said proudly.

It's one thing she's carried over from Cuba, where resourcefulness, means survival.