I remember when I lived in Kenner, Lousiana (4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th grades) that we had charts and would track the hurricanes. The feeling that a hurricane was coming was not one of fear but of joy that school would be cancelled but sadness that for every inch of water I had in my street a friend of mine had an inch in their house. The rains would come and they would stack their furniture on bricks. Neighbors would chain off roads or sit on porches with shotguns to remind people not to create wakes while driving past their houses.
Well now that everyone has become hurricane watchers, The Severe Weather Information Center is a website that should be part of your weather bookmarks.