Hurricane season

The hurricane season runs from mid-May to late November in the Atlantic and eastern Pacific oceans. During this period, tropical depressions and storms may develop into hurricanes, powerful storms that produce strong winds and rain and can generate high waves, damaging storm surges and tornados. The most threatened areas are the Caribbean, Mexico, Central America and the east and Gulf coasts of the United States – specifically, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas. In Asia, tropical storms occur throughout the year.

Travel disruptions

Hurricanes often cause extensive damage to infrastructure, cutting off access to transportation, emergency assistance, health care, telecommunications, power and even food and water. Although the most severe damage usually occurs along coastlines, hurricanes can also cause significant damage inland when heavy rains cause flash floods and landslides and storm surges cause flooding up to 40 kilometres inland.

In the event of a hurricane, travellers may be evacuated from their hotels to emergency shelters and may be stranded for days waiting for flights to resume and roads to reopen. The Government of Canada may be unable to help you in these circumstances.

Necessary precautions

If you choose to travel to a hurricane-prone destination during hurricane season, taking the following steps can help reduce your personal risk:

If a major weather event takes place while you are abroad, remember that the key to surviving hurricanes, typhoons, tropical storms and tornadoes is preparation. By reviewing your personal safety practices and by taking sensible measures before, during and after a storm you can stay safe. There are three basic elements that are important in the threat of any severe weather event:

For more detailed information on preparing for, and surviving, a hurricane or other major storm, visit Public Safety Canada’s Your Emergency Preparedness Guide, Before a hurricane and During a hurricane pages. For information on emergency preparedness for people with special needs, visit Public Safety Canada’s Emergency Preparedness Guide for People with Disabilities/Special Needs.

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