BSO IS READY FOR HURRICANE SEASON. ARE YOU?

Experience has taught us that the best thing to do before a hurricane is prepare, so you can be confident during a storm that you've done everything you can to keep your family safe. As your sheriff, I want you to know that during a hurricane, you can depend on the resilience and resourcefulness of the men and women of the Broward Sheriff's Office.

As a local law enforcement agency, we work year-round with our local, state and federal partners to improve our response, cooperation and communication during hurricanes. Just as we at BSO plan for unexpected weather emergencies, there is plenty you can do to make yourselves, your families and your homes ready for hurricane season. Don't wait for a storm to threaten.

First, create a disaster supply kit that will last your family three to seven days. Ask yourself what you would need if you couldn't get to a grocery store, pharmacy, bank or gas station for several days. Your kit should include a gallon per person per day of water, non-perishable food, a can opener, blankets and pillows, rain gear and sturdy shoes, first aid items, prescription drugs, toiletries, a flashlight and batteries, a battery-operated radio, a fully-charged cell phone as well as a non-cordless phone. Pack any special food, medicines or supplies you might need for an infant, an elderly person or a pet. Make sure you have credit cards and cash on hand and gas in your vehicle. Put all of your important documents such as insurance and medical records, bank account numbers and your social security card in a waterproof container or waterproof plastic bag.

Talk to your family about which place in your home would be the safest during a storm and at what point you would move to a shelter. Plan what to do with your pets if you have to evacuate and designate an out-of-state relative or friend to be a point of contact for each family member after a storm. Make sure children know when and how to call 911.

Protect windows and glass doors with hurricane shutters. If you use plywood, make sure the pieces are fastened adequately, so they don't become dangerous, airborne debris during a storm.

The Broward Sheriff's Office is prepared to help you and your family in any emergency, but I encourage you to create a disaster supply kit and talk to your family about an emergency plan. On behalf of everyone at the Broward Sheriff's Office, I wish you and your family the safest possible hurricane season.

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