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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb. 18, 2001
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    New York, NY
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    Default So.... what's a hurricane like?

    I've survived two earthquakes (one just this past week, sheesh!) and two tornadoes, but I've never been in a hurricane. Anyone want to tell me what I'm in for?

    I'm on the third floor of a pre-1900s brownstone in Zone B, which the city says means we "may experience storm surge flooding from a MODERATE (Category 2 or higher) hurricane."

    Should I really be out buying flashlights and water and stuff?



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec. 19, 2005
    Location
    Some where in the middle of nowhere.
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    3,572

    Default

    Yep the biggest mistake people make with hurricanes is procrastination and underestimating what they can do.

    I grew up in SW FL and lived through the Andrew mess. If its Cat 3 or above I'm heading for the highway.

    Being prepared with water/ candles / non perishables / and protecting any important paperwork or items against wind or water..including yourself top the list.

    Also realize that the wind and rain come in bands so often there are small periods where you might be fooled into thinking its all over... check your weather radio or the tv if you have power before you head out thinking its past.
    "I would not beleive her if her tongue came notorized"



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr. 12, 2002
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    3,467

    Default

    It couldn't hurt. It's always better to be over-prepared and not need it than vice versa.
    Rhode Islands are red;
    North Hollands are blue.
    Sorry my thoroughbreds
    Stomped on your roo. Originally Posted by pAin't_Misbehavin' :



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr. 16, 2005
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    6,769

    Default

    Windy and wet. But if the eye passes over you... that's kinda cool. It's an eery like calm.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar. 27, 2008
    Posts
    305

    Default

    Wind can blow things into your windows, although on 3rd floor maybe not so bad. I would tape them up them up if you are going to get cat 2 winds. Most likely your power will go out, so you need flashlights, candles, food that doesn't need to be cooked. The stores might be damaged or pretty empty afterwards.

    We stayed through Ike in a zone B. Boarded our windows. No flooding but we were without power for 2 weeks. We have a generator so could run some things like the fridge. Didn't have a problem with lack of water.

    Battery operated radio is nice to keep up with what's going on.



    Good luck!



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec. 28, 2009
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    1,656

    Default

    A power failure is a strong possibility. After Isabel, we lost power for 10 days and many roads were not passable due to downed trees and power lines.

    Cell phones didn't work through the 10 days without power because the towers has no power. Yes, the phone companies put generators at the towers, but someone decided they needed them first.

    Because the power was out over a widespread area, many stores were closed, so you couldn't resupply easily.

    Flooding can cause a problem for public water supplies and make them not potable.

    Have water, flash lights and food that is non perishable and also that doesn't HAVE to be heated/cooked to be edible. I would have enough for 3 days worth at a minimum.

    Also, If you have a bath tub that will hold water, plug it up and fill it. You can use it to take sponge baths and such. We used the water from our hot tub to get clean and had placed large trashcans under our downspouts for the gutters to collect water to flush toilets. My husband gave me a hard time about it before the storm, but was happy we had water to flush toilets for 10 days!!

    You will be happier/calmer if you are prepared, and all that stuff can be used eventually, so its not a total waste.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec. 9, 2010
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
    Posts
    416

    Default

    Living in NC, if you wait too long to buy your non-perishables, there won't be any left! Don't procrastinate. Buy bottled water (by the gallon), batteries/flashlights, and food.

    Hurricanes are nothing more than wind and rain, but they can leave you with flooding and no power for days. Best to be prepared, just in case. Oh, and I second the fact that the wind and rain come in bands. There tends to be periods of quiet before all hell breaks loose again.

    I wouldn't freak out too much. As was mentioned on another thread, the Weather Channel seems to putting a lot into this one.


    Good luck!



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar. 3, 2010
    Posts
    1,422

    Default

    Everyone knows about drinking water. Don't forget water to flush toilets. Empty kitty litter jugs are great for this.

    Put things you want to keep dry in a large tupperware or rubbermaid container. If a branch takes out a window you will be amazed at how much water can enter your house that quickly.

    Towels. It can get really hot after a hurricane. Dry towels and ice are tough to come by. If you can afford it get a yeti cooler.

    Barometric pressure can make any injuries you have had hurt ten times worse than they ever did. Do not underestimate this pain for yourself or someone else. This includes horses and pets.

    Garbage bags. If a window does get broken you'll need these to dispose of whatever gets wet. It molds quickly and stinks just as fast.

    Baking soda and preferred air fresheners. You will be amazed at how quickly an entire area smells just awful when these is no power. This can go on for miles. Vick's can be a help too.

    Bleach. I prefer non chlorine.

    Shop rags over paper towels.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov. 13, 2002
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    3,573

    Default

    IME, unless you are on the coast or near to it or its a Category 4/5, it is basically a nasty rain storm with high winds.
    I am not minimizing the damage it can do with a direct hit, but once you get off the coast, it is not really going to be a direct hit.
    In general, they weaken substantially when they get as far north as NY (but that is a generalization)
    Power outages are likely though
    There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man.(Churchill)



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun. 23, 2003
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    1,857

    Default

    It's missing us here in Charleston, but I was out buying water, masking tape for the windows, peanut butter, bread, tuna, etc on Tuesday. Same day I also took in all the hoses and stuff in from the yard. They changed the track enough over the next 24 hours that I didn't end up stocking up on dog/cat food. I had plans for the grill and how I was going to work the cars depending on what I decided to do. I had both evacuation plans (direct hit) and non-evacuation (non-direct but close enough that it causes worry) plans in place depending on what went on. This included plans for my animals!!

    You'd rather have the stuff and not need it, then play it off and have nothing if something does happen.

    Filling the bathtub with water is a good idea... it means you can still flush the toilets!!



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb. 18, 2001
    Location
    New York, NY
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    Default



    You guys are scaring me! If it makes any difference, I'm in NYC, not NC—the downside of which is that we're not really used to hurricanes.

    Regardless, we're going to the grocery store tonight to get some food and I'll make sure to get a few gallons of water, flashlight, etc., as well.

    Our windows back up to a courtyard facing other buildings, so I imagine that that will break the wind's power somewhat, right?



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr. 28, 2008
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    7,248

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    There are hurricanes and there are hurricanes. I stayed in Hatteras Village through a direct hit once, but it was a smaller Category 1 (Bonnie). This storm is much more serious, as it is a large storm with more powerful winds and more importantly, likely to have more storm surge if it hits just right. Storm surge is the real threat here, and almost always.

    Isabel, not 10 years ago devastated Hatteras Village. The surge/waves basically wiped out the first two rows of houses/motels and built a new inlet. 40 foot waves crashed through some of the houses on my street. Nothing left but pilings. Several friends survived clinging to trees as their homes floated away. And Isabel was not the storm Irene could be if it hits just right.

    http://www.hatterasonmymind.com/Isabel.html

    I would be surprised if NYC gets badly hit, storms tend to peter out as they drag across dry land, but look at the storm surge maps and see where you are: http://www.wunderground.com/hurricane/surge_images.asp NYC is vulnerable because it is a funnel so a smaller surge could have a larger effect. Take that seriously.

    If you are in a storm surge zone, get out. Better to evacuate a hundred times than get in real trouble once.

    Hopefully this storm will not be as bad as the projections. Weather is so fickle -- if it turns just right it will slow enough to really help. The wall broke, which is good news:
    http://www.wunderground.com/blog/Jef...?entrynum=1902



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb. 18, 2001
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    New York, NY
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by fordtraktor View Post
    I would be surprised if NYC gets badly hit, storms tend to peter out as they drag across dry land, but look at the storm surge maps and see where you are: http://www.wunderground.com/hurricane/surge_images.asp NYC is vulnerable because it is a funnel so a smaller surge could have a larger effect. Take that seriously.

    If you are in a storm surge zone, get out. Better to evacuate a hundred times than get in real trouble once.
    Thanks, I looked at the maps and we're only in trouble if the storm hits as a Category 2 (we're on the far west side of Manhattan, almost at the Hudson River—18-20 ft. surge possible it looks like?).

    The city has ordered mandatory evacuations for people in Zone A, but we're in Zone B so we haven't been ordered to leave just yet.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Nov. 12, 2006
    Posts
    1,070

    Default

    I was in one in the 70s at the Jersey shore as a kid where we evacuated on the late side, and one a few years back in Puerto Rico (Cat 2) that spun over the island and spun around the atmosphere and hit us a second time. Then as noted elsewhere here today, Isabel in the DC area in 2003.

    The wind is like a freight train and unlike a bad summer storm with gusts, it doesn't come and go - it's sustained. For hours. Which means trees, rooftops, etc. are getting pounded with no let up.

    The eye is creepy and still and peaceful all at once. Then wham-o, the back side of the thing.

    It's the flooding and power outages that are the problems.

    Best advice is to fill up that bathtub with water and plug it up very strongly so you've got a water source. Capturing rainwater for flushing in the event of water going out is a great idea.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec. 28, 2009
    Location
    VA
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    Default

    I am several hundred miles inland from the coast of VA, and Isabel had us out of power for 10 days, and roads impassable for several.

    VDOT was overwhelmed...If we hadn't helped, along with MANY other private citizens with tractors and chainsaws, several days of impassable roads would have been into several weeks.

    Your windows, most likely will be fine. You are not on a ground floor, so you won't have damage from flooding. It will be power and not being able to get out to restock.

    Get a good book while you're out.



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Apr. 28, 2008
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    I hope everyone stays safe. I feel nauseous looking at the Isabel pics again -- in the first set by CHEC, near the end the yellow house with its bottom floors gutted and the light grey house knocked off its foundation were right in front of mine. I was lucky and got by with minimal damage last time, lost my underroom and some spare building supplies but that's all. Not sure I will be so lucky twice!



  17. #17
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    Mar. 16, 2009
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    Near the cupcake shop
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    I can't believe Bloomberg is suspending bus and subway service starting at noon tomorrow.



  18. #18
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    Feb. 18, 2001
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    New York, NY
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    Quote Originally Posted by AliCat View Post
    I can't believe Bloomberg is suspending bus and subway service starting at noon tomorrow.
    I know!

    We don't use the subway that often (bikes and our own two feet suffice generally), but I feel so bad for people in the service industry who have to find a way to get to/from work tomorrow. In fact, we're putting someone up with us tonight so they can go to work tomorrow.



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Oct. 22, 2003
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    1,735

    Default

    I've ridden out some hurricanes. Most notably Gloria in the 80s (I was living on Long Island), and Floyd in 1999 when I was living in Chestertown, MD. While living in CT we got clipped by some others along the way.

    Lots of downed powerlines, waterspout in MD, leaves everywhere, some broken windows.

    I can tell you I've also stood in the eye of Flyod and Gloria. It was the COOLEST experience and honestly, I'd ride out hurricanes to do it again and again.

    You stand in the eye and you look up and there is nothing but pure blue sky, but you can see the thick wall of clouds wheeling around the blue eye. It is TOTALLY silent and totally still except for the roar of the winds. There's no rain. The sound is like the sound a conch held to the ear. It is totally surreal.

    And then in 10 minutes the winds start to pick up, the rain begins and you're in the hurricane.
    "The nice thing about memories is the good ones are stronger and linger longer than the bad and we sure have some incredibly good memories." - EverythingButWings



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jun. 16, 2006
    Location
    SE Coastal NC
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    Default

    Eastern NC native checking in here! We're actually expecting the eye of the Irene to pass over us here early tomorrow morning as a Cat 1/Cat 2 hurricane. The biggest problem with hurricanes is that people greatly underestimate them. They can be VERY powerful and very unpredictable. The winds that you see predicted are SUSTAINED winds - as in the wind starts blowing constantly and doesn't stop. This can be very destructive over a period of several hours. Flooding can be a big issue as some storms can easily drop 8-10 inches of rain over a 12 hour period of time. If you're near the coast, the storm surge from the hurricane pushing ashore can cause a great deal of damage as well. The rain and wind comes in "squalls" so just because conditions clear up for a bit, you're not necessarily out of the woods. You're probably just in the gap between rain bands.

    As far as prep, be ready to live for several days with no power. This is the most challenging part to me and varies based on what type of dwelling you live in. You'll need to draw up water in the bathtub if you're on a well or your city water source fails. Have bottled water on hand also. Flashlights for when the power goes off. Cell phone car chargers for charging your phone when the power goes off. Food that requires little to no prep and doesn't necessarily need refrigeration. ICE to help keep some foods cold in coolers or in your freezer. By the time Irene gets up to you guys, hopefully it will have deflated quite a bit and just be a big rain maker for you! Good luck!
    "Farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil, and you're a thousand miles from the corn field." --Dwight D Eisenhower

    Boston Terrier Rescue of NC - www.btrnc.org - Adopt for Life!



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