Hurricanes often act like they have a mind of their own and they are fickle. They can look like they are going one way and then turn back the other and sometimes even circle. Just subtle changes in the track can mean the difference between a clean miss and a direct hit and so, when they are seen ramping up in the Atlantic it is important to pay attention. As an example, here in Florida, we were faced with the potential of four strong hurricanes in our area in a short six week period in 2004. In any of these storms, that minor adjustment at some phase of it forward motion could have brought all four directly over us which would have likely destroyed us. As it turned out, we got two in a fourteen day period, both with hurricane force gusts but not sustained. But the power was out for seven and eight day periods, respectively, with lots of flooding and had we not hunkered down well, it would have been intolerable. More recently in 2017, Hurricane Irma approached with guestimates saying it would go west of Florida, a later track saying east of Florida, with the storm actually ending up going directly up the spine of the Peninsula. For days it look like massive Hurricane Dorian would be a direct hit on Florida last year, yet instead it tracked east of the state and delivered the bulk of its wrath to coastal North Carolina. So, watch those tracks and remember, with so many areas so heavily populated in all of the likely hot spots, if you are going to relocate, you have to do it early. Wait and you might find yourself stuck on the interstate in a car in the middle of the storm, not something to recommend. That's not fearmongering, that's a fact.
While the most dangerous period which is underway lasts until mid-September, that doesn't mean we are off the hook then, for some of the worse storms we've had have been all the way into mid or late October. I can remember as a boy riding out Hurricane Hazel in 1954 in October, and she was the worst one on record along the Carolina shore. Yes, sometimes the media seems to over-emphasize the danger. After all, potential tragedies draw large audiences. But if we ignore it and go about our business as if there is no threat, it's like playing Russian roulette. Don't do it. It's one of those things that if you don't handle it well, you might just not live to tell about it. Stay aware and stay alive.