Bryan Norcross' Advice For South Florida: Get Ready, Irma Is One For The History Books

Sep 7, 2017

Weather Channel meteorologist Bryan Norcross has a reputation as the reasoned voice that guided South Florida through the lowest moments of Hurricane Andrew.

And now, he’s trying to help South Florida prepare to survive Hurricane Irma.

Norcross spent an hour on WLRN’s Topical Currents Thursday giving solid advice and answering questions from listeners. You can hear the discussion below:

Some of the major takeaways:

  • If you’re sheltering in place, find an interior space. “Use common sense. You don't want to be on the balcony. Don't be next to the sliding glass doors. But you want to be in an interior hallway in a safe spot.”
  • If you’re in a high rise, the best place to be is in the stairwell, on a lower floor, but not the first floor. And plan to be there a while.
  • Keep in mind the needs of all members of your family, which means thinking through questions like:  “What food am I going to take if I have a pet? How’s it going to go to the bathroom? What are we going to do to make this as bearable as we possibly can?”
  • Get your water ready now, it might not be drinkable immediately afterward. “We're pretty likely to lose drinkable, potable tap water. When the power goes out and the pressure in the water system decreases, it stirs up impurities within the water system. So once they get it even working at regular pressure again, the water has these impurities in it. So that's why they have a boil water order that goes into effect.”
  • Don’t open your windows, even if one of them breaks. “If you open another window, all you're doing is asking more storm to come in. People are inclined to do that because if the center of the hurricane comes near them… the air pressure and the atmospheric pressure goes down so much that they feel the pressure in their ears. It's just like going up a very fast elevator where you feel the pressure in your ears because of the change atmospheric pressure. So they think, ‘Oh how we're getting pressurized.’ It’s actually not. It's actually the pressure is decreasing so much due to the storm.”
  • Protect your car now. “Everybody should be looking for a high spot to put their car. And not end up having your car be a victim of a hurricane while you're OK.”