Hurricane Preparedness

The Atlantic hurricane season is from June 1 through November 30.

A hurricane is a specific type of tropical cyclone, which is a rotating, organized system of clouds and thunderstorms that originates over tropical or subtropical waters and has a closed low-level circulation. Tropical cyclones rotate counterclockwise in the Northern Hemisphere.

  • Tropical Depression: A tropical cyclone with maximum sustained winds of 38 mph (33 knots) or less.

  • Tropical Storm: A tropical cyclone with maximum sustained winds of 39 to 73 mph (34 to 63 knots).

  • Hurricane: A tropical cyclone with maximum sustained winds of 74 mph (64 knots) or higher.

  • Major Hurricane: A tropical cyclone with maximum sustained winds of 111 mph (96 knots) or higher, corresponding to a Category 3, 4 or 5 on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale.


More hurricane preparedness videos (YouTube)

The Eye of the Storm: A Coastal Texan's Survival Guide (PDF)

Protecting Your Boat Against Severe Weather (PDF)

Texas Homeowner’s Handbook to Prepare for Coastal Natural Hazards (PDF)

Homeowner's Handbook - Spanish Version (PDF) (Web version)

Hurricane Preparedness Week 


NOAA National Hurricane Center

About the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale (PDF)

Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale Extended Table (PDF)

Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale, includes animation showing damage from different categories 

Hurricane strikes between 1950-2011 

Tropical Cyclone Names 

Tropical Cyclone Preparedness Guide (English PDF)

Ciclones Tropicales (Spanish PDF)

PSAs on Hurricane Preparedness Week (Video)

Spanish PSA on Hurricane Preparedness Week (Video) 

Be a Force of Nature with NOAA’s Weather-Ready Nation

National Hurricane Center Outreach Resources


State of Texas

Texas Emergency Portal 

Texas Department of Transportation (includes evacuation routes)

Texas Department of Transportation: Highway Conditions 

Texas Department of Public Safety 

Texas Ready - English version

Texas Ready - Spanish version

Texas Extension Disaster Education Network (EDEN)


Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)

FEMA Texas Region Hurricanes 

Make a Plan for Kids

COVID-19 Pandemic Operational Guidance for the 2020 Hurricane Season 


Disaster Supply Kit

Basic Supplies




Other Links

American Red Cross 

Disaster Preparedness for Seniors by Seniors (pdf)

Hurricane Preparedness Tips for Parents from Save the Children

National Hurricane Survival Initiative 

Hurricane Hacks – How to Drive Safe Before, During, and After a Natural Disaster


After the Storm: Navigating FEMA Factsheets

Texas Sea Grant has modified a series of information sheets, first developed by the Louisiana Sea Grant Law and Policy Program, to help those affected by major storms to navigate Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) programs and related legal issues during rebuilding.

Glossary of Frequently Used FEMA/NFIP Terms and Acronyms (PDF)

Advisory Base Flood Elevations (ABFE) During Rebuilding (PDF)

When Your Home or Business Was Completely Destroyed or Substantially Damaged (PDF)

Increased Cost of Compliance (ICC) Program (PDF)


NOAA Ocean Service

Texas Marine Debris Emergency Response Guide (Webpage)

NOAA NOS Disaster Response Services (Webpage)

COVID-19 and Hurricane Preparedness

  • Disaster kits need to include hand sanitizer, cleaning products, and two cloth face coverings for each member of the family who can wear one.
  • Damage assessment work and applying for assistance is going to be done virtually more than ever o This means photo-documentation of assets before and after an event is extra important.
  • Those involved in sheltering are doing their best to build in social distancing and other safety measures, but people may still be afraid to seek shelter and this may well mean more people in harms way.

COVID-19 Pandemic Operational Guidance for the 2020 Hurricane Season (FEMA)

Preparing for Hurricanes During the COVID-19 Pandemic (CDC)

Going to a Public Disaster Shelter During the COVID-19 Pandemic (CDC)

Hazards Data Distribution System (USGS)

A Dual Disaster Handbook: 6 Recommendations for Local Leaders Responding to Floods During COVID-19 (American Flood Coalition)

Federal Funding Opportunities for Flood Resilience: A Guide for Small Cities (American Flood Coalition)

Strong Homes, Safe Families FLASH® podcast series (Federal Alliance for Safe Homes)