DEM: don't let the winds of October blow your house down

Recognizing vulnerability to October winds and potential for other natural disasters in Washington state, Governor Jay Inslee proclaimed October “Washington State Disaster Preparedness Month”.

October is the usual start of wind and winter storm season. Several episodes of dangerous high winds have already occurred, and winter winds can be quite extreme, causing damage and power outages.

Strong Northwest windstorms occur from October through April, the majority striking in the winter between November and February.

Prepare for winter storms and other natural disasters now. Below are easy steps to start with:

Review and renew your store of supplies; have seven days of easy to prepare food and water on hand. Find recommended supplies on the DEM website,

If you will be away from home, have a neighbor check on your place in case of a winter cold snap or power outage, which can freeze pipes. Getting water turned off can prevent damage and leaks in the water system.

Have plenty of flashlights and batteries on hand, and a corded phone. Corded phones sometimes work even with the electricity out. Report an outage to OPALCO at 376-3599.

Keep informed by having a battery operated radio available; sign up to receive Island Alerts at the DEM website.

More information:; the San Juan County Department of Emergency Management at 370-7612, 370-0587; email DEM personnel are available to speak with you about your personal and neighborhood preparedness or any of these October preparedness events.


We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.

Read the Oct 26
Green Edition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Browse the archives.

Friends to Follow

View All Updates