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Hurricane Season Preparedness

Hurricane season runs from June 1 to November 30. Hurricanes can cause storm surge, heavy rainfall, inland flooding, high winds, tornadoes and rip currents. These can cause damage to infrastructure, stopping basic services such as electricity and water. As a result, on rare occasions, New Orleans issues a mandatory evacuation order if a hurricane is headed in the direction of the city. Please read below so that you are prepared for hurricane season.

How to Prepare

  • Pay attention to the daily weather forecast. Check NOLA Ready (a website by the City of New Orleans) for information about weather that may result in hurricane conditions.
  • Check emergency updates on Tulane’s Emergency website (you can also call the Tulane Alert Line: 504-862-8080 or 877-862-8080 (toll free) for updated information).
  • Review the Tulane Hurricane Guide for Students. Tulane University has compiled useful links and information that you should read through. This will help you understand the university protocol during an emergency and what steps you need to take to be prepared now.
  • Make an Emergency Kit. You should have a kit ready in case you need to quickly leave your home. The kit should include the following:
  • A “Go Bag”: Cash, telephone contact numbers, driver’s license, passport, travel documents, and any required medications.  Include at least 3 days of clothes.
  • Essential emergency supplies: Water, food, flashlights, and first aid kits are very important.  You can get a list of other basic disaster supplies here.


  • Make an Evacuation Plan. Once you have reviewed the student guide, you must make a personal hurricane evacuation plan. Good areas to evacuate to include Atlanta, Knoxville, Birmingham or any city at least 300 miles inland. Below are some options:

    • Fly: If you plan to fly, it is not necessary for you to fly back to your home country. Classes will likely resume a few days after an evacuation, so we recommend you fly to a location within the U.S not affected by the hurricane. To enter the airport during an evacuation, you will need to buy tickets online and print the proof of purchase and boarding pass before you go to the airport.
    • Drive: You can drive your own car, rent a car, or ride with a friend who has a car. If you plan to rent a car, you will need a credit card and a valid driver’s license from your home country or a U.S. driver’s license. Be aware that during an evacuation rental cars will be in high demand and may quickly become unavailable. The Hurricane Guide for Students has detailed information you will need if you are driving.
    • Other Methods of Transportation: If you evacuate early, other means of transportation such as Greyhound Buses or Amtrak trains may also be available – make sure you buy tickets in advance and print out your proof of purchase. If a citywide evacuation is ordered, the city will commandeer buses and trains and commercial tickets will no longer be available.
    • Tulane Evacuation: As a last resort, and only to be used if your existing evacuation plans fall through, you may evacuate with the University. Evacuating with the University will not be a comfortable experience. You will be sleeping on the floor in a gym, your access to food options will be limited and you will be required to get permission to leave the evacuation area. You will need your Tulane ID to board the Tulane evacuation shuttles. Pets will not be permitted on the Tulane evacuation shuttles, so pet owners must have other plans for evacuation.


Enter your Evacuation Plan and U.S. Telephone Number in Gibson

  • It is important that Tulane knows how you plan to evacuate. Make sure to enter your Personal Family Storm Plan as soon as possible.
  • Enter your U.S. phone number in Gibson so that you receive emergency text alerts. This is also very important for other kinds of emergency situations, such as an active shooter on campus.

If an Evacuation Order Is Issued

  • The Greater New Orleans area has a population of approximately 1.2 million people. A large percentage of this population waits until the last minute to evacuate. This causes extreme congestion at airports and on the highways. If the school orders evacuation you should leave as soon as we announce the school is closing. This should be around 4 days prior to land fall.
  • If you leave early your evacuation time will be reasonable and your chances of securing flights will be higher. If you wait past 3 days before land fall you will begin to encounter long lines at gas stations, outgoing flight delays, flights being full and slow moving interstate traffic
  • Once again 3 to 4 days before the storm arrives is your optimum evacuation time line.


  • Remember to bring your passport, I-20 or DS-2019 and your health insurance card.    
  • Communicate with your family as much as possible so that they know you are safe. We cannot underestimate the importance of keeping in touch with friends in family.  Please let them know you are safe and keep important contacts in writing in case something happens to your phone.
  • Consult the Alert Line and Emergency website for official information regarding Tulane University on a daily basis. Listen to local news media for other information. Stay where you are if it is safe until authorities give the "all-clear."
  • DO NOT ATTEMPT TO RETURN TO CAMPUS until instructed to do so via the Alert Line and Emergency Website.
  • Be prepared in case telephones and cell phones in the New Orleans area become inoperative.
  • Bring cash with you in case you cannot access an ATM machine.
  • If you have pets, make sure to include them in your evacuation plan. You will need a pet carrier/crate, adequate food, water, blankets and any required medications for your pet. Plan ahead to make sure your transportation and lodging will accept pets. No pets will be permitted in the Tulane evacuation shuttles.


If you have any questions or concerns about hurricane preparedness, please contact the Office of Emergency Preparedness and Response:

Phone: (504) 862-8266