Hurricane Laura: Prepare your home for high winds in Houston as Laura strengthens

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The National Hurricane Center upgraded Laura to a hurricane Tuesday morning.

The storm is expected to make landfall between Wednesday night and Thursday night as a hurricane. Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner has urged residents to prepare for a major wind event, emphasizing heavy gusts as a bigger threat than flooding with this particular storm.

“Harvey was a rainy event. This one, for example, would be more of a windy day. We are certainly more prepared than we were three years ago,” Turner said. “We learned a lot from Hurricane Harvey, but you cannot compare Harvey with what we are dealing in this particular case.”

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For those more inland, wind will indeed be a major part of the storm.

As you prepare for Hurricane Laura, be sure to do the following to protect yourself and your home from hurricane-force winds:

  • Bring all outdoor furniture, toys, potted plants, lawn ornaments, small grills, tools and other outdoor items inside. They can become projectiles that hit people, pets and homes. 
  • Anchor heavy objects that cannot be brought inside, such as grills or propane tanks. 
  • Trim trees with branches that could break in the storm.  
  • Check tie-downs if you live in a mobile home, and make a plan for a sturdy shelter during the storm. 
  • Reinforce windows and doors with plywood if possible. The Federal Alliance for Safe Homes recommends sheets at least 5/8 inch thick.
  • Bring all animals and pets indoors if possible. Do not leave dogs tied up in the yard. Livestock should remain out in a pasture or other open area. 
  • Check for potential projectiles indoors, such as plants or other objects near windows, and move them to a safer place. 

STAY INFORMED: Here are the emergency alerts, numbers you should have to prepare for Hurricane Laura