Navy urges preparedness this month, as they continue to recover from Hurricane Irma last year

KEY WEST, Fl. - September is National Emergency Preparedness Month and the Navy is urging Sailors and their families to be ready for any situation.

Navy Installations Command uses the Ready Navy Program for these education efforts, with a theme of "Disasters Happen. Prepare Now. Learn How." this year.

“National Preparedness Month reminds us all of the importance of being prepared in the event disaster strikes,” said Tim Alexander, CNIC Director of Operations in a Navy statement. "For many of us, it is not a question of ‘if’ but a matter of ‘when.’ Having a well thought-out plan to execute when the time comes significantly improves the chances of a positive outcome.”

The effort comes as the Navy and Marines Corps continue to recover from damage caused by Hurricane Irma last September.

When that hurricane made landfall, it damaged facilities used by the services in Key West, Florida.

A task order worth more than $22 million was awarded in late August for repairs to 28 facilities at Naval Air Station Key West.

“It’s been almost one year since Hurricane Irma hit the Keys and we have come a long way in getting the air station back to normal operations, thanks to NAVFAC,” NAS Key West Commanding Officer Capt. Bobby Baker said in a Navy release. “The speed at which our facilities have been restored and the plans for future restoration are both amazing and a testament to the hard work our facilities managers put in every day.”

When Irma hit the Florida Keys in September 2017 as a Category 4 hurricane, it caused water and wind damage to numerous buildings. Work is expected to be completed by February 2020.