Crazy Weather - Be Prepared: We Are At The Peak of Hurricane Season

September 15, 2022

There’s no denying that crazy weather has been happening all over the world in the past few years. From flooding rains, rising tides and intense storms to increasing air temperature and killer heatwaves, the weather has been dangerously erratic and folks here in South Florida are concerned.

After 16,000 years of predictable, stable temperature that allowed civilization to flourish on this earth, the climate is changing before our eyes. Polar glaciers are melting and entire continents are experiencing rising sea levels along with more frequent unbearable heat. Even winters have been more severe in the north with paralyzing snow storms that follow each other when the temperature shifts to record-breaking low freezing levels.

Those rising sea levels are of particular concern to us, since we are totally surrounded by water. Florida has long been identified as the state most vulnerable to rising tides and heavy rains. For example, just note West Avenue on Miami Beach and many of the streets in East Hollywood and Hallandale Beach after a good rainfall.

Scientific data over the past decades that has been monitoring climate change clearly links these unusual occurrences to rapidly increasing carbon levels that gather in the atmosphere, trapping the heat that normally would disseminate into the stratosphere. This is what they call “The Greenhouse Effect.” The biggest culprits contributing to this man-made dilemma are the variety of carbon emissions from oil and coal-burning buildings, air traffic, vehicles, the use of petroleum products and other energy sources.

Predictions over the years were there: triple-digit ‘feels-like’ temperatures that are being felt throughout most of the United States and Europe over the summer, sea levels are expected to rise up to six feet by the time babies who are born today celebrate their 80th birthdays, Plant, Animal and Sea Life Displacement as rain and/or heat effects their natural habitats. Over these past decades, we were aware of these and other life-changing cautions, but now we are beginning to experience it and this is just the beginning.

Can We Control The Weather?
We can surely try! According to the Union of Concerned Scientists, each of us can do our part in conscientiously making an effort to reduce our own “carbon footprints.” After all, footprints make a trail and trails become roads and highways. They start somewhere. We can begin by purchasing higher efficient appliances and replacing older air conditioning systems, water heaters, laundry machines and kitchen appliances. Check for tax incentives and you probably will find a happy surprise on your energy bill. We can also try to cut down on plastic. Get used to bringing reusable bags when shopping. In most of Europe, shoppers are charged for each plastic bag they request, so they bring their own. Some big box stores and markets here in the United States have already implemented no-bagging as their practice.

Think electric cars. Every gallon of gas we burn contributes 25 pounds of heat-trapping gas into the atmosphere. Erase the thought that the efforts you make won’t matter. To paraphrase another famous quote, “One small carbon footprint from each of us can contribute to a giant leap for humanity.”

It’s Peak Hurricane Season – Be Prepared
As we head into the peak of hurricane season, now is a good time to go over your hurricane plan and make sure you’re prepared. You should have enough supplies on hand to be self-sufficient for at least seven days after a storm. Find out what should be in your Hurricane Kit, as well as other storm safety tips, by visiting the City of Hollywood’s Hurricane Season Preparedness webpage at: www.hollywoodfl.org/hurricane Or the page offered by the City of Hallandale Beach: https://www.hallandalebeachfl.gov/1364/Hurricanes-Tropical-Storms

Peak Hurricane Season and Rainy Season go hand-in-hand. Many areas in Hollywood & Hallandale Beach are prone to flooding from heavy rains. Some floods develop slowly, while others such as flash floods can develop in just a few minutes. Be aware of flood hazards no matter where you live or work, but especially if you are in low-lying areas or near water. Here are some important Flood Safety Tips:

• Motorists should not attempt to drive through flooded areas. Remember, “Turn Around, Don’t Drown.”
• Do not wade or play in standing flood water, which can contain contaminants, harmful Bacteria, sharp debris and other items that could cause injury or infection.
• Be prepared to notify your Homeowner’s Insurance Provider if you experience flood damage and seek their advice on documenting the damage and drying out your home.
• The same applies for contacting your Vehicle’s Insurance Provider if you find your vehicle has been damaged.

For more information on how to protect yourself and your property from flood hazards, visit the Florida Division of Emergency Management at: https://www.floridadisaster.org/

The City Of Hollywood’s Alert System
Sign up for the Emergency Notification System called “Alert Hollywood.” Used by many Government Agencies throughout Florida, “Alert Hollywood” notifies residents through phone calls, e-mails and/or text messages to mobile phones of an Emergency in the community such as a Hurricane Watch or Warning, Flash Flood Warning, Tornado Warning, serious police situations and other critical incidents. Visit the “Alert Hollywood Page” on the City Of Hollywood’s WebSite for the link to register. After you submit your information, you will receive “Alert Hollywood Notifications” whenever an alert is issued. Alerts may be received by phone and/or email address. Severe Weather Alerts issued by the National Weather Service are automatically issued through the “Alert Hollywood System” if you elect to receive those notifications. The “Alert Hollywood Service” is FREE, Text Message Fees by your Wireless Carrier may apply depending on your mobile phone plan. Register today: https://www.hollywoodfl.org/725/Alert-Hollywood

The City Of Hallandale Beach Alert System
The City Of Hallandale Beach uses the Everbridge Mass Notification System to alert residents via Text and Robo Call of Critical and Emergency Situations. The App is designed to work when connectivity is limited. You can sign up to receive these alerts by downloading the Everbridge Mobile App on your Smartphone at: https://member.everbridge.net/index/453003085617939#/signup