RALEIGH – As North Carolina works to rebuild from past storms, Gov. Roy Cooper on Monday urged North Carolinians to take steps now to get ready for the next hurricane season. Hurricane season runs from June 1 through Nov. 30
Cooper proclaimed May 5-11 as Hurricane Preparedness Week.
“North Carolina has been hit by two huge storms in two years, and we know from experience that any storm should be taken seriously,” Cooper said. “We hope and pray that North Carolina will be spared this hurricane season, but we must do everything we can to be prepared. Now is the time to get ready to protect your home and family from the next hurricane.”
History indicates that families and communities who prepare in advance for hurricanes and other disasters are generally able to recover more quickly. Cooper urged families not to wait until a possible hurricane is in the forecast and to make time now to discuss their emergency plans, review their homeowners and renters insurance policies, and update their emergency supplies.
An emergency supply kit should contain enough supplies not just to get through the storm, but for the potentially lengthy aftermath. Make sure to have enough non-perishable food and water to last each family member three to seven days.
Other essential items include:
• Copies of insurance papers and identification sealed in a watertight plastic bag
• First-aid kit
• Weather radio and batteries
• Needed prescription medicines
• Sleeping bag or blankets
• Changes of clothes
• Hygiene items such as toothbrush, toothpaste, soap and deodorant
• Pet supplies including food, water, leashes, bedding, muzzle and vaccination records.
During storms, people should stay tuned to a trusted local news source and keep a battery-powered radio nearby for weather and evacuation information. They also need to heed the warnings of state and local officials and evacuate quickly when told to do so.
“It’s critical that people prepare themselves and their families now for emergencies,” said Public Safety Secretary Erik A. Hooks. “Prepare not just for the storm itself but for the days to follow, as with the larger storms it sometimes takes a few days for essential services to be restored.”
Hooks reiterated that the most dangerous threat from hurricanes and tropical storms is flooding and storm surge. The storm doesn’t have to be classified as a tropical system to cause serious damage, he said.
Other steps to take now to before hurricane season:
• Know your evacuation routes and plan how you would get to safer ground if needed.
• Consider flood insurance, especially if you live near a body of water or in an area that has ever experienced flooding.
• Sign up for flood alerts from FIMAN, the NC Flood Inundation Mapping and Alert Network, to get up-to-the-minute warnings on potential flooding.
More information on hurricanes and overall emergency preparedness can be found on the ReadyNC mobile app and online at www.ReadyNC.org.