Weather Alert – Tropical Storm Cristobal and Hurricane Season 2020: U.S. Embassy San Salvador, El Salvador (June 4, 2020)
Location: El Salvador
Event: Tropical Storm Cristobal, although currently north of the country, could generate heavy rains in El Salvador for the next several days. Hurricane season for the Atlantic and Eastern Pacific officially runs from June 1 until November 30.
As we saw with Tropical Storm Amanda, hurricanes and tropical storms can cause life-threatening flash floods, dangerous winds, treacherous surf and rip currents, landslides, and widespread damage to infrastructure. Even inland areas far from the coastline can experience the destructive impact of storms. Torrential rains can persist for several days, severely impacting accessibility to food, water, and medical services.
Depending on the severity of a storm, U.S. citizens may need to stay in emergency shelters with limited food, water, and medicine. These shelters may also be subject to additional limitations because of sanitary protocols in place due to COVID-19. Storms also have the potential to disrupt flight schedules, causing delays or cancelations.
U.S. citizens can start preparing today with a few simple steps:
- Make an emergency plan. Your family may not be together if a powerful storm or hurricane strikes. Know how you will contact one another and reconnect if separated. Establish a family meeting place that is familiar and easy to find and make sure everyone in your household knows and understands your hurricane plan.
- Prepare your emergency hurricane kit. After an emergency, you may need to survive on your own for several days. Prepare an emergency kit with essential items you might need for at least 72 hours following a storm. Kits might include batteries, flashlights, nonperishable food, and water. Do not forget prescription medications and any other supplies for children, elderly family members, or pets.
- Review important documents. Make sure your U.S. government travel documents are up to date. Make copies of your personal documents, including insurance documents, and store copies in a secure password protected digital space, a watertight plastic bag or a container for extra protection.
Actions to Take:
- Visit our Embassy webpage on COVID-19 for information on conditions in El Salvador.
- Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive safety messages and other travel information.
- Monitor the website and social media feeds of Civil Protection, the Ministry of the Environment and Natural Resources (MARN), and the Vice Ministry of Transport for the latest information on weather updates, safety precautions, road closures, etc.
- Monitor the webpage and twitter account of the Ministry of Health.
- Consult the CDC website for the most up-to-date information.
- Visit ready.gov for information about how to prepare for disasters and emergencies.
- For the most recent information on what you can do to reduce your risk of contracting COVID-19 please see the CDC’s latest recommendations.
- Visit the COVID-19 crisis page on travel.state.gov for the latest information.
- Visit the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Climate Prediction Center for the 2020 hurricane forecast.
- Visit the Department of State’s Hurricanes, Typhoons, and Cyclones page for more information.
- Monitor the U.S. National Hurricane Center.
- Monitor the local news for updates, follow directions from local authorities, and in case of an emergency call 911.
- Keep friends and family informed of your whereabouts.
Vice Ministry of Transport
- U.S. Embassy San Salvador, El Salvador
- Telephone: 503-2501-2999 (24-hour phone line)
- El Salvador’s National Emergency Operations Center: 503-2281-0888 or 503-2201-2424
- National Police of El Salvador: Dial 911
- State Department – Consular Affairs: 888-407-4747 or 202-501-4444
- Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security updates.
- Follow us on Facebook and Twitter