The wind howling, the shutters banging against the walls, the lights continuing to flicker as rain is pouring from the sky from thunderous grey clouds, and not an inch of sunlight is coming down. This scene may sound like the beginning of a horror movie, but it’s actually a typical day for many Americans during hurricane season.
Hurricane season begins in early June and ends in late November. Although hurricane season is what many Americans dread year-round, it’s something that communities typically come prepared for. Preparation consists of buying all the basic necessities such as water, non-perishable foods, batteries, and so on.
Sophomore Elisa Ortuzar explained the hurricane mayhem for her family, “Hurricane season already begins in May in my household. My mom starts going to all the stores and buying anything she thinks is necessary, although most of it’s not. She likes to be prepared before it’s too late and my family thinks she’s crazy, but we’re always ready for what’s to come.”
Well, this is a question everyone’s facing during this year’s hurricane season because of COVID-19. Precautions are being taken worldwide in public areas, with examples including mask wearing, constant sanitizing, and social distancing. However, few people choose to not abide by these precautions, due to minimizing the seriousness, generalizing, entitlement, and many other reasons (Psychology Today). Not only do they put their health in jeopardy but any who are exposed to them. These few people make it nearly impossible for many to leave their homes even when it’s absolutely necessary.
The situation has changed how some people are preparing, or whether they’re able to in the first place.
Valerie Questell, a freshman at PPCHS, discussed the difficulty of hurricane shopping during the coronavirus pandemic: “My mom doesn’t like it when I go out to help with the preparation because she feels she’s putting me at risk. When she goes to buy the hurricane supplies[,] she makes sure to wear gloves, keep her mask on, and to maintain a distance from everyone. Thankfully us preparing has been easy, safe, and not too difficult.”
However, going out and buying supplies is a risk many families cannot take. Blaze Duran, a senior at PPCHS, clarified how his family has found ways around.
“A few members in my family have weak immune systems[,] and we try to limit our outings as much as possible,” Duran explained. “However, we still need supplies for any upcoming hurricanes. Even though we don’t go to stores, we’ve found Instantcart and even Amazon to be super helpful. But, many times, the items take weeks to ship or are out of stock until next month, so it’s not always perfect.”
Instacart is a mobile app that allows people to check off what they want from an available store, such as Walmart, Target, or Sedanos, and have it delivered to their door. Apps like these have become much more popular due to the pandemic, and especially during hurricane season when many supplies are at such high demand.
Although COVID-19 has made hurricane supply shopping much more difficult, efficient, and safer alternatives to going out to continue to grow. Isabella Rodriguez, a junior at PPCHS, shared her family’s motto for this hurricane season, “If corona couldn’t take us, neither can any hurricane.” The quote helps to show Americans are resilient and strong, and will continue to band together against any upcoming hurricane and troubles the pandemic may bring. Stay safe!