Tampa, Florida -- Whether this is your first hurricane season or you've lived in Florida for years, there's something new this year we want to tell you about.
Just in time for this hurricane season, the American Red Cross has rolled out a set of awesome and free apps for your smartphone.
The new Hurricane app takes you step-by-step through getting your home and family ready, and even gives you a place to start if you've been hit by a hurricane and need help.
The app is free for the iPad, iPhone, and for all Android devices.
It has excellent step-by-step guides on how to prepare well in advance, and also what to do if a storm is approaching right now.
It lets you set up personalized weather alerts for where you live and work and also where your friends and extended family live.
It can point you to open shelters.
There's a toolkit that turns your phone into a flashlight, a strobe light, and an audible alarm.
It's pre-loaded with content that lets you get to critical steps even if you can't get a cell phone or wireless signal -- a huge help after a storm, when phone connections are typically spotty or nonexistent.
And there's a one-touch way to send an "I'm safe" message out to your family and friends through email, text, and social media.
On top of the Hurricane app, the Red Cross also has apps for other emergencies, including the Tornado app and Wildfire app.
If you're downloading the Hurricane app, also consider installing the free First Aid app from the Red Cross. It walks you through any medical emergency -- even how to do CPR, step-by-step, if you're someone's last chance to survive.
There are two ways to get these apps.
The first method is the same way you'd get any other app. On an iPhone or iPad, go to the App Store. On an Android device, go to Google Play. Then just search for "Red Cross". The various apps will pop up, ready to install.
The other option is to place a phone call from your smartphone. Place a voice call to **REDCROSS from your phone. As soon as your voice call goes through, your phone will receive a text message with a link to download the apps.
Just make sure you download them now and don't wait until the last minute.
You may also like:
Download our 2013 Hurricane Guide
Your 7-Day Forecast
iPhone: Download our Interactive Radar weather app in the iTunes App Store. Click here or search WTSPWeather
Android: Search WTSPWeather in the Google Play Market
Text Alerts: For severe weather text alerts in your area, click here
Follow 10 News Chief Meteorologist Jim Van Fleet on twitter @jamesvanfleet
Follow 10 News Meteorologist Bobby Deskins on Facebook and Twitter
Follow 10 News Meteorologist Kate Wentzel on twitter @KateWentzelWTSP
Follow 10 News Meteorologist Mark Collins on twitter @collinsweather
Grayson Kamm, 10 News