Florida Depression 9If you’re in Florida, it’s important to know that a tropical depression is brewing in the Caribbean and weather scientists predict that Florida will be meeting it first-hand this week. As of early morning on Monday, August 29, 2016, the system’s center was located roughly 160 miles west-southwest of Key West, Florida. Experts believe that Florida may be experiencing a tropical storm late Monday or early Tuesday.

Through Wednesday, the depression may bring 3 to 5 inches of rain through the southern area of the Florida peninsula and Florida Keys. Governor Rick Scott has urged South Florida residents to develop an emergency plan in case the area experiences flooding.

Ohio’s Weekend Flooding

Over the weekend, southwestern Ohio was struck with flash flooding that brought three inches of rain in as little as a few hours. Some areas of the city received 8 inches of rain, triggering a number of traffic jams, school closures, and property damage. According to The Weather Channel, flooding even led to closure of certain areas of the highway.

How Can I Prepare?

Luckily, weather reports describe the depression as “poorly organized,” which is good news for Floridians. However, it’s important to make sure that you’re prepared in case the worst of the predictions becomes reality. In many ways, preparing for a tropical storm can be similar to preparing for a hurricane, though fortunately, wind damage is less of a threat.

Here are some considerations for preparing your home this week:

  • If you’re in low-lying areas, consider getting sand bags to help absorb water.
  • Sign up for emergency alerts through your county.
  • Prepare to evacuate if you live in a mobile or manufactured home, or if you live in a flood zone.
  • Make sure your emergency kit is stocked with items like clean drinking water and non-perishable food items.
  • Trim your home’s shrubbery and trees, and make sure that downspouts and rain gutters are cleared.

We urge you and your family to stay safe and prepared as we enter hurricane season in full force!