Leon County Disaster Survival Guide

Prepare. Act. Recover.

Surviving all hazards

While hurricanes pose a major threat to Leon County, there are other potential disasters that threaten lives and property. From violent tornadoes to hazardous chemical spills, it is critical to know what to do when warnings are issued.

  • Identify a meeting location should an incident prevent you from getting home.
  • Build a disaster bucket for potential disasters.
  • Locate a safe room you can retreat to in the event of severe weather events such as thunderstorms and tornadoes.

Thunderstorms and lightning

Thunderstorms are a common occurrence in Florida, especially during the summertime. The Sunshine State sees about 1.4 million lightning strikes in an average year and we lead the nation in lightning-related deaths. About 10 percent of thunderstorms are severe, with winds 58 mph or stronger and 1-inch hail. Keep an eye on the weather forecast before you venture outdoors and heed nature’s warning when you hear the sky start to rumble.

Seek shelter

Every thunderstorm produces lightning. If you hear thunder, lightning is close enough to strike. Go inside or find shelter immediately. Wait 30 minutes after hearing the last crash of thunder before going back outdoors.

When thunder roars, go indoors!

If you’re indoors during a thunderstorm, stay away from anything that conducts electricity, such as corded phones, electrical appliances, computers, plumbing, metal doors and windows.

If stuck outdoors ...

  • Get off any elevated areas.
  • Do not shelter under an isolated tree.
  • Get as far away from water as possible.

Downed power lines

  • Do not touch downed power lines.
  • Assume all downed power lines are energized.
  • Contact your utility provider to report downed power lines.

Man-made and biological hazards

Terrorism and active shooters

Unlike a hurricane, there may be no warning for a terrorist attack, but you can plan ahead by taking the steps referenced earlier: emergency contacts, emergency alerts, a meeting place and a disaster bucket. Be alert and aware of your surroundings. If you see something — report it to law enforcement. Report suspicious activities to the Florida Dept. of Law Enforcement at 1-855-FLA-SAFE.




Hazardous materials