Tropical weather is expected to strike the Texas coast this weekend, but emergency officials are urging Texans to be vigilant in their preparations for storm damage.
This is especially important for those living in FEMA Manufactured Housing Units (MHUs). The units are designed to be exceptionally safe and secure temporary housing solutions. But as with all forms of housing, FEMA MHUs are at risk for damage in severe weather. Below are some practices you can follow to protect yourself, your family and your property while living in a FEMA MHU:
- If severe weather is predicted, stay alert to weather warnings and comply with any evacuation orders.
- Always follow the guidance of local officials. It is their job to protect you, so it is your job to listen to their warnings and obey their orders.
- Plan out evacuation routes. Be sure to plan multiple routes to several safe shelters so that you are ready for potential road closures.
- If you need to evacuate your MHU, do so, but leave it in place.
- Never take shelter in an MHU during high winds, a tornado, a hurricane or a flood.
In Case of a Hurricane
- Hurricanes are particularly dangerous because of their unpredictability. While they are usually accompanied by heavy rain and strong winds, they also can cause tornados and floods.
- Use the weather radio to monitor evacuation orders. Evacuate immediately if local officials recommend MHU occupants find sturdier shelter.
In Case of a Flood
- If the potential for flooding exists in your area, monitor the status through weather warnings and notices.
- Be aware that flash flooding can occur. If a flash flood warning is issued, immediately evacuate and move to higher ground.
- If you have time, place any important items on the highest shelves. Disconnect electrical devices, but avoid standing in water while doing so.
- When evacuating, do not attempt to walk or drive through flooded areas. Six inches of water can cause you to fall and can flood most compact or midsize cars. A foot of water will cause most vehicles to float. Two feet of water can sweep away even trucks and SUVs.
- Do not leave your pet behind in an MHU.
In Case of Severe Storms
- If a severe storm is forecast for your area, move to a sturdy building or shelter until the storm has passed.
In Case of a Tornado
- If a tornado warning is issued for your area, evacuate the MHU immediately.
- Go to the lowest floor of a nearby sturdy building or storm shelter, away from the windows.
- Review your insurance documents and ensure you have important documents in a waterproof container. Pack extra medication, nonperishable food, cash and clothes in your emergency kit.
- Don’t forget to plan for your family pets and pack extra food and medication for them.
- More techniques for minimizing severe weather risks are available at www.ready.gov.
- Contact local officials for information and possible evacuation routes.
- If your MHU was damaged due to severe weather, contact the maintenance number you were provided when you were licensed in your unit.