Friday, May 26, 2006

Hurricane Awareness Week-Being Prepared

We continue with News 14 Carolina's coverage of Hurricane Awareness Week. Each day the National Weather Service in Raleigh has covered a different topic to help all of us prepare for the 2006 Atlantic Hurricane season. Today the actual topic is how to be prepared if a storm hits your area. Please read this very important information.

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE RALEIGH NC
FRI MAY 26 2006...

NORTH CAROLINA HURRICANE AWARENESS WEEK...

THIS WEEK HAS BEEN DECLARED NORTH CAROLINA'S HURRICANE AWARENESS WEEK FOR 2006. ALL WEEK LONG THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE WILL BE ISSUING INFORMATIVE MESSAGES TO HELP YOU PREPARE FOR HURRICANE SEASON. EACH DAY WE WILL COVER A DIFFERENT TOPIC.

TODAY WE WILL TALK ABOUT BEING PREPARED. PREVENTING THE LOSS OF LIFE AND MINIMIZING DAMAGE TO PROPERTY FROM HURRICANES ARE RESPONSIBILITIES THAT ARE SHARED BY EVERYONE. IF YOU ARE ASKED TO EVACUATE, YOU SHOULD DO SO WITHOUT DELAY. BUT UNLESS YOU LIVE IN A COASTAL OR LOW-LYING AREA, AN AREA THAT FLOODS FREQUENTLY, OR IN MANUFACTURED HOUSING, IT IS UNLIKELY THAT EMERGENCY MANAGERS WILL ASK YOU TO EVACUATE. THAT MEANS THAT IT IS IMPORTANT FOR YOU AND YOUR FAMILY TO HAVE A PLAN THAT MAKES YOU AS SAFE AS POSSIBLE IN YOUR HOME. DISASTER PREVENTION INCLUDES MODIFYING YOUR HOME TO STRENGTHEN IT AGAINST STORMS SO THAT YOU CAN BE AS SAFE AS POSSIBLE. IT ALSO INCLUDES HAVING THE PROPER SUPPLIES ON HAND TO WEATHER THE STORM. THE SUGGESTIONS PROVIDED HERE ARE ONLY GUIDES. YOU SHOULD USE COMMON SENSE IN YOUR DISASTER PREVENTION.

DEVELOP A FAMILY PLAN - YOUR FAMILY PLAN SHOULD BE BASED ON YOUR VULNERABILITY TO HURRICANE HAZARDS INCLUDING HIGH WIND, FLOODING, AND TORNADOES AND FALLING TREES. IN A DISASTER YOU SHOULD PLAN TO BE ABLE TO PROVIDE FOR YOURSELF AND YOUR FAMILY FOR 5 DAYS WITHOUT UTILITY SERVICES OR AID. SHARE YOUR PLAN WITH FRIENDS AND FAMILY.

LOCATE A SAFE ROOM OR THE SAFEST AREAS IN YOUR HOME FOR EACH HURRICANE HAZARD. IN CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES THE SAFEST AREAS MAY NOT BE YOUR HOME BUT WITHIN YOUR COMMUNITY.

DETERMINE ESCAPE ROUTES FROM YOUR HOME AND PLACES TO MEET IF YOU BECOME SEPARATED.

HAVE AN OUT-OF-STATE FRIEND AS A FAMILY CONTACT.

MAKE A PLAN NOW FOR WHAT TO DO WITH YOUR PETS IF YOU NEED TO EVACUATE.

CHECK YOUR INSURANCE COVERAGE - FLOOD DAMAGE IS NOT USUALLY COVERED BY HOMEOWNERS INSURANCE.

STOCK NON-PERISHABLE EMERGENCY SUPPLIES AND A DISASTER SUPPLY KIT.

CREATE A DISASTER SUPPLY KIT - THERE ARE CERTAIN ITEMS YOU NEED TO HAVE REGARDLESS OF WHERE YOU RIDE OUT A HURRICANE. THE DISASTER SUPPLY KIT IS A USEFUL TOOL WHEN YOU EVACUATE AS WELL AS MAKING YOU AS SAFE AS POSSIBLE IN YOUR HOME.

IMPORTANT ITEMS FOR YOUR KIT INCLUDE...

WATER - AT LEAST 1 GALLON DAILY PER PERSON FOR 3 TO 7 DAYS.

FOOD - AT LEAST ENOUGH FOR 3 TO 7 DAYS NON-PERISHABLE PACKAGED OR CANNED FOOD AND JUICES. INCLUDE FOODS FOR INFANTS OR THE ELDERLY AS WELL AS SNACK FOODS. NON-ELECTRIC CAN OPENER IN A MUST ALONG WITH COOKING TOOLS, FUEL, PAPER PLATES AND PLASTIC UTENSILS.

BLANKETS AND PILLOWS CLOTHING - SEASONAL CLOTHES ALONG WITH RAIN GEAR AND STURDY SHOES. FIRST AID KIT INCLUDING MEDICINES AND PRESCRIPTION DRUGS. SPECIAL ITEMS FOR BABIES AND THE ELDERLY. TOILETRIES AND HYGIENE ITEMS ALONG WITH MOIST AND DISINFECTANT WIPES.

FLASHLIGHTS AND RADIO - BATTERY OPERATED LIGHTS AND RADIOS INCLUDING A NOAA WEATHER RADIO. CASH PRIMARILY IN THE FORM OF WITH SOME SMALL BILLS. IMPORTANT DOCUMENTS KEPT IN A WATERPROOF CONTAINER OR WATERTIGHT RESEALABLE PLASTIC BAG OR BOX INCLUDING INSURANCE, MEDICAL RECORDS, BANK ACCOUNT NUMBERS, SOCIAL SECURITY CARDS, AND SO ON.

TOOLS - KEEP A SET OF TOOLS WITH YOU DURING THE STORM OR IN YOUR VEHICLE IF YOU ARE EVACUATING. PREPARE PET CARE ITEMS INCLUDING PROPER IDENTIFICATION, IMMUNIZATION RECORDS, MEDICATIONS, AMPLE SUPPLY OF FOOD AND WATER AND A CARRIER OR CAGE.

SECURE YOUR HOME - THERE ARE THINGS THAT YOU CAN DO TO MAKE YOUR HOME MORE SECURE AND ABLE TO WITHSTAND STRONGER STORMS. BE SURE TO SECURE LOOSE OUTDOOR ITEMS AROUND THE HOUSE BEFORE THE WIND STARTS TO BLOW. HOW WELL YOU AND YOUR FAMILY COPE WITH A DISASTER WILL DEPEND ON HOW WELL YOU PLAN, PREPARE AND ACT. REALIZE DISASTERS OCCUR EVERYWHERE IN OUR STATE AND HURRICANES POSE THE GREATEST THREAT FOR LARGE SCALE DISASTERS. PREPARING FOR TOMORROWS STORM TODAY IS THE BEST THING YOU CAN DO FOR YOURSELF AND YOUR FAMILY.

Hurricane season officially starts on June 1. During the first few months of hurricane season, most storms tend to develop in the Gulf of Mexico. These storms can and have impacted North Carolina as a tropical depression and even a tropical storm producing heavy rains and isolated tornadoes. "Cindy" did this in 2005.

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