The story began as a hurricane warning to the people of the Islands, but not many people listened or believed a storm was coming. Rain and windy breeze of force and sounds of trees cracking, slamming tree limbs on the rooftops and windows, but still no seriousness of preparation before the hurricane passed over the islands.
On September 17-18,1989 Hurricane Hugo, a deadly category 4 of 140 mph (230 km/h) passed over the U.S. Virgin Islands. Shadow stories of midnight blues told for many years. Never to be forgotten. Rrrrrr........
Moments later, a radio forecasted the hurricane was dead on as the eye of the storm traveled over the islands. High waves and sea surge continue to violate the lands.
Inside a closet with our hands clam together, children clinching, parents reassuring their loved ones it will pass, many other people were outdoors in the horrific storm. Hurricane Hugo continued crushing and breaking everything in sight. People who did not prepare for the storm were running and screaming for help....... Buildings crumbled and cars flew in the sky, spinning in a swirl with the winds, crashing into a school yard a quarter mile away.
The hurricane eye came closer and the islands became a disaster. A suction of force as if a vacuum was pulling particles off the floor. The sky turned black, hurricane walls were spinning widely and winds started roaring with swirling pieces of houses, trees, metal parts, dead animals and dead ocean creatures everywhere. Hurricane Hugo passed with an unbelievable sight of nature's destruction. A few days later, dead smells and bones of unknown creatures.
People became hungry when there was no help for months, many hammered and clawed their way out of all the rubles. Starving cries of hungry babies, children and elders tried to find shelter and food, but the devastation kept people in a shocking awe of survival. As a wise Captain says, "Don't be a fool's hook, preparation is the key to hurricane survivors"!
Captain says "Heed the Warnings of wind speed in a hurricane!"
The characteristics of a hurricane wind speed transcend 32 metres per second, that releases large amount of energy that pertains a lot of water in several degrees of latitude, in estimation of 3,500,000,000 tons of air per hour. Wind gust of about 60mph have the intensity that will cause damages to roofs, windows, trees and other outdoor objects. However, the strongest winds gust increased 185 kilometer per hour. This in fact adds pressure to structures in transit of the eye passing, because of the islands water temperature of warm shallow lands more energy travel west over the West Indies. Furthermore, the central or eccentric position of the eye size and the traveling speed of the hurricane can take about a few minutes to about an hour to pass over the islands. Insufficient preparation or ignoring a hurricane warning can cause devastating damages or loss of life.
"Rrrrr bone thugs, see Weather Predictions using Meteorological Measurements and Weather Forecasting!"
Scientific importance in observation and practice of weather forecasting. In early summer hurricanes starts forming in June in the Gulf of Mexico and West Caribbean. There are four areas origin of hurricane tracking.
- North Atlantic Hurricane South of Cape Verde Islands.- East of Lesser Antillies- Western Caribbean Seas- Gulf of Mexico
Preparation on how to stay out of harms way during a hurricane.
- Stay inside, away from windows, glass doors, ceiling fans, and ceiling light fixtures
- Stay inside a small room with no windows, such as closets or bathrooms.
- Turn off gas stove tank valves, to avoid any gas leaks.
- Unplug all objects or plugs in outlets in the house in case of electrical power plant blow outs.
- Keep all cleaning chemicals stored in areas that's secured. To avoid hazardous spills in the house.
- If the roof blows off while your in the house, always prepare all corner wall in the house in advance. Use a bed mattress, a large ply wood or any firm, sturdy object and cover for protection. Attach hooks and latches bolted to your walls and floor for stronger hold. Sit low down in the corner with the object pull tight over you.
- If your in a car, prepare to bolt down your tires. Hammer 12 inch stake into the ground, as many stakes surrounding your car. Use chains to wrap around the tires and bolting your car to the ground. Duct tape glass on the outside and duct tape cardboard on the inside of the glass. Stay low in the back seat. Make sure your gas tank is empty.
- Wear protective clothing during a hurricane. Long pants, socks, t-shirt, gloves and football hat or construction hat.
Preparation before the hurricane
- Food and water
- First Aid Kit
- Radio and extra batteries
- Important documents stored, such as I.D, birth certificate, check books, etc.
- Maps and community evacuation routes.
Preparations after the hurricane
- Work gloves
- Utility knife
- Push broom
- Carpenter tools kit
- Mechanics tools kit
How to prepare with your children for a hurricane?
- Practice step by step plans in keeping safe during a hurricane.
- Keep updated by radio and disclose details concerning the hurricane with your children.
- Always be reassuring with your children about any escape plans and emergencies.
- Always correspond with your children's concerns and listen to any signs of fear in you children. Be ready to manage their emotional concerns.
Tips on preparing for your pets during a hurricane.
- Get food supply and water
- Get pet Emergency kit
- Get leash, harness and carrier
- Get lots of newspaper and plastic bags for dog poop disposals.
Tips on preparing for your garden.
- Bring all the fruits and vegetables inside to eat, also put all potted plants inside.
- Board around your fruit and vegetable trees. Sledge hammer 2 or 4 wood stake into the ground, about 3ft deep surrounding the trunk of the tree, lean top of wood onto the tree, hold and tie with rope around the tree trunk. Keep wood tight and sturdy against the tree. Make sure the wood leans at the center of your tree trunk.
- Root out plants or trees from the ground if needed, immediately add roots into water inside home till storm passes, then replant the roots back to the ground. Make sure you know how to root a plant or tree.
Survival tips if your out on a boat
- Be sure to have on a life jacket
- Be sure to carry daylight and nighttime signal devices
- Be sure to have a life raft on board at any time. An approved raft should contain a first aid kit, fishing kit, hand held red flares, sea dye, signal mirror, food and water.
- Always notify the Coast Guard of your location at sea. For distress signals, have a EPIRB turn on.