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Hurricane Preparedness Week

The week of May 5-11, 2019 is set aside as Hurricane Preparedness Week to provide citizens with information and the opportunity to allow them to be better prepared to deal with the effects of a hurricane should impact their community. In Gaston County, this year will mark the 30th anniversary of the devastation caused by Hurricane Hugo. Which makes citizens here keenly aware of the dangers and horrific damage that can be caused by a hurricane, even this far inland.

In preparing for hurricanes and all severe storms, the first rule is to take the dangers they pose seriously and plan accordingly. The second, is to always be prepared and supplied for a minimum of 72 hours as some emergencies can so overwhelm responders that their ability to get help to you may take that long or longer.

With this in mind, here are some items to have on hand as you plan for dangerous weather:

  • Water- at least 1 gallon per person, for 3 to 7 days
  • Non-perishable food items to last at least 3 days.
  • Have a stock of items on hand to care any small children and the elderly.
  • Manual can opener, cooking tools, fuel, and lighters/matches.
  • Cell phone and charger.
  • Blankets and pillows.
  • Seasonal Clothes
  • Well-stocked first aid kit (and prescription medications and oxygen if needed)
  • Toiletries and hygiene items
  • Flashlights, lanterns, and batteries
  • Disinfectant wipes
  • Cash
  • Important documents (In waterproof bag)
  • Pet care items
  • Top off fuel tanks on vehicles

Other preparations to consider are:

  • Making sure hurricane tie downs are installed and secured on mobile homes and outbuildings.
  • Have large trees and limbs cut back from houses that may fall on your home that can result serious injuries and deaths.
  • Consider installing a generator of other alternate source of power and make sure those systems are operational.
  • Make sure your homeowner’s insurance policy is up to date and covers flooding if you live in a flood prone area.

Please check the Gaston County Emergency Management and Fire Marshal’s Office Facebook page this week for daily tips on hurricane and severe weather preparedness.

For more information contact Keith Rapp, Director, Gaston County Office of Emergency Management at 704-862-6240.