image of barnstable county courthouse

It’s Hurricane Preparedness Week in Massachusetts!

Governor Maura Healey has declared July 9-15, 2023, to be “Hurricane Preparedness Week,” recognizing the importance of preparing for the impact of extreme weather. As part of the Administration’s commitment to strengthening community readiness and resiliency, the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) will highlight the Commonwealth’s ongoing hurricane mitigation efforts and offer resources for residents and municipalities to learn what they can do before, during, and after a powerful storm to stay safe and protect property from hurricane-related hazards.

Read the press release from Governor Healey’s office in its entirety at Governor Healey Proclaims July 9-15 as “Hurricane Preparedness Week” in Massachusetts |

Here on Cape Cod, we take a regional approach to emergency management through the Barnstable County Regional Emergency Management Committee (BCREPC); a coalition of law enforcement, fire service, health care, public health, public works, EMS, military, and numerous other affiliated agencies as outlined by the Massachusetts State Emergency Response Committee (SERC).  It represents the towns of Barnstable, Bourne, Brewster, Chatham, Dennis, Eastham, Falmouth, Harwich, Mashpee, Orleans, Provincetown, Sandwich, Truro, Wellfleet, and Yarmouth in Barnstable County, and the town of Nantucket in Nantucket County. 

The first step in being prepared for a hurricane or other weather emergency is to know your local shelter through our regional shelter system. The BCREPC oversees the following six shelters, which are run by regional volunteer groups:

  • Barnstable Intermediate School
  • Cape Cod Technical High School (Harwich)
  • Dennis-Yarmouth Regional High School
  • Falmouth High School
  • Nauset Regional High School
  • Sandwich High School

Participating regional volunteer groups assist with running shelters and providing logistical support. They include American Red Cross, Cape Cod Medical Reserve Corps, Disaster Animal Response Team (DART), AmeriCorps Cape Cod, Community Emergency Response Team (CERT).

Emergency management officials from BCREPC recommend that MINIMUM preparedness steps for all citizens should include the following:

  1. Prepare for the need to relocate in the event of a weather emergency. Know where you want to ahead of time.
  2. Have a plan for evacuation and build an emergency preparedness kit.
  3. Pack any medications that you might need while you’re away from home.
  4. Make a plan for the care of your pets and remember, all six of our regional shelters accept pets thank to Cape Cod DART!
  5. Have a battery-operated weather radio to monitor local news and weather updates.

Additonal Hurricane Preparedness Resources

Hurricane Safety Tips |

Hurricane Evacuation Zones |

Make a Family Emergency Plan |

Hurricanes |