Hurricane Safety Reminders After Otis Devastates Mexico’s Pacific Coast

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Need to Know from SafeWise
  • Category 5 Hurricane Otis landed on Mexico's Pacific Coast yesterday.
  • At least 27 have died and at least 4 people are missing.
  • Climate change is cited as an accelerator of the storm's intensity.
  • Read our safety tips and reminders to be better prepared for hurricanes.

Hurricane Otis was a devastating Category 5 hurricane that made landfall on Mexico's Pacific Coast, particularly near Acapulco yesterday. The storm unleashed its fury on several coastal regions, causing widespread damage, killing at least 27 people, and displacing thousands of residents.

Otis rapidly intensified from a tropical storm to a Category 5 hurricane within 24 hours, with wind speeds reaching 165 mph. This rapid intensification was attributed, in part, to exceptionally warm ocean waters, which provided the storm with extra fuel and energy.

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Homemade plywood covers the windows of a beach cottage in Florida in preparation for an oncoming hurricane.

Image: SandiMako, iStock

Climate change's impact on hurricane intensity

Scientists have warned that rising global temperatures could result in more powerful hurricanes, and Hurricane Otis is a stark example of this trend. As the ocean's surface temperatures warm, hurricanes can gather more energy, leading to their intensified strength. The increasing frequency of extreme weather events like Otis underscores the urgent need for global climate action.

Help for those affected

Various organizations, including Direct Relief, have been actively assisting and supporting those affected by Hurricane Otis. They are working to assess the extent of the damage and provide essential medical aid and resources to communities in need.

Hurricane safety reminders and tips

Emergency preparedness: Residents in hurricane-prone areas need to be prepared. Have an emergency kit ready, including non-perishable food, water, flashlights, batteries, and important documents. Stay informed about evacuation routes and shelters in your area.

Stay informed: Keep a close watch on weather forecasts and alerts issued by local authorities. Follow evacuation orders promptly and avoid taking unnecessary risks.

Flood safety: Flooding is a common aftermath of hurricanes. Avoid driving or walking through floodwaters—they may be deeper or more treacherous than they appear. If flooding is imminent, move to higher ground.

Generator safety:

  • Place generators outdoors. To prevent carbon monoxide poisoning, run the generator in a well-ventilated area.
  • Never use a generator inside your home or in enclosed spaces.
  • Don't use a gas stove or car to heat the home if power is out, as you risk carbon monoxide poisoning.

Stay connected: Keep a charged cell phone and a portable charger on hand. Establish a communication plan with family members to stay connected during and after the storm.

After the storm:

  • Exercise caution when returning to your home or community after the hurricane has passed.
  • Watch out for downed power lines, flooded roads, and debris.
  • Report any hazards to local authorities.

Assist vulnerable populations: Check on neighbors and family, especially older adults or people with special needs, to ensure their safety and well-being.

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Disclaimer: Portions of this article were assisted by automation technology. All content therein has been augmented, thoroughly edited, and fact-checked by our in-house editorial staff of human safety experts.

Rebecca Edwards
Written by
Rebecca Edwards
Rebecca is the lead safety reporter and in-house expert for She has been a journalist and blogger for over 25 years, with a focus on home and community safety for the past decade. Rebecca spends dozens of hours every month poring over crime and safety reports and spotting trends. Her expertise is sought after by publications, broadcast journalists, non-profit organizations, podcasts, and more. You can find her expert advice and analysis in places like NPR, TechCrunch, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, The Miami Herald, HGTV, MSN, Reader's Digest, Real Simple, and an ever-growing library of podcast, radio and TV clips in the US and abroad.

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