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How to stay prepared during hurricane season

Houston and Harris County leaders are working to protect residents, but there are things you can do to stay safe this hurricane season.

HOUSTON — It's hurricane preparedness week and we want to make sure you're ready for the next potential storm.

We all know Houston is no stranger to hurricanes, but what has the City done to help protect its residents since Hurricane Harvey?

The next hurricane season begins on June 1. Since Harvey, voters passed a $2.5 billion flood control bond package. Bayous have been widened and dredged. Retention ponds have been built. And more projects have been completed and are in the works.

"There have been more than 100 projects started across the entire county," Harris County Meteorologist Jeff Lindner said.

The bad news? There have been funding issues and also many questions arose after the government deliberately flooded homes on the west side by releasing water from the Addicks and Barker reservoirs in fear that they could break.

"Work along Buffalo Bayou, Addicks, Barker is still in the study phase," Lindner said.

Regardless, no project will stop flooding altogether in the Houston area, so here are some quick reminders:

  • Keep gas in your car
  • Have hurricane preparedness kits ready
  • Stay informed

Harris County Deputy Emergency Management Coordinator Francisco Sanchez said you can text "gulf 2021" to 888-777 to have all of that information sent to your device.

Experts say to get flood insurance and do not rely on FEMA. The average FEMA payout during Harvey was $4,600.

"To hope the federal government is going to bail me out is the wrong approach," Harris County Emergency Management Coordinator Mark Sloan said.