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High Wind Safety

Emergency Response
Dana Smith, Commissioner



Severe weather events such as hurricanes and tornadoes produce violent, damaging winds. The Dutchess County Office of Emergency Management advises residents and property owners to take the following actions to protect themselves, their families and their property:

  1. Find out if your home meets current building code requirements for high-winds. Experts agree that structures built to meet or exceed current building code high-wind provisions have a much better chance of surviving violent windstorms.

  2. Protect all windows by installing commercial shutters or preparing 5/8 inch plywood panels.

  3. Garage doors are frequently the first feature in a home to fail. Reinforce all garage doors so that they are able to withstand high winds.

  4. If you do not live in an evacuation zone or a mobile home, designate an interior room with no windows or external doors as a “Safe Room.” 

  5. Before hurricane season, assess your property to ensure that landscaping and trees do not become a wind hazard. Trim dead wood and weak / overhanging branches from all trees. And consider landscaping materials other than gravel/rock.

  6. Most mobile / manufactured homes are not built to withstand hurricane force winds. Residents of homes not meeting that level of safety should relocate to a nearby safer structure once local officials issue a hurricane evacuation order for their community.

  7. Once a hurricane warning is issued, install your window shutters or plywood panels.

  8. When a hurricane warning is issued for your community, secure or bring inside all lawn furniture and other outside objects that could become a projectile in high winds.

  9. Listen to local radio and television broadcasts for safety instructions from local officials, and go to your designated “Safe Room” when directed to do so.

  10. Do not leave your “Safe Room” until directed to do so by local officials, even if it appears that the winds calmed. Remember that there is little to no wind in the eye of a hurricane.

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