Local emergency officials push hurricane preparedness

Published: Jul. 29, 2020 at 8:23 PM EDT
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NEW BERN, N.C. (WITN) - While we continue to keep an eye on the tropics, emergency management officials are using this time to remind you that now is the time to get prepared for any storm that may head our way this hurricane season.

Mace Robinson, American Red Cross Executive Director says, “It’s time to start going through your home and finding all of those hurricane essentials that you know you’ll need.”

This year your hurricane preparedness kit is more important than ever and should include a few more items, aside from water, food, batteries and flashlights, and all of your important documents and medications.

Robinson says, “This year especially with this COVID pandemic, we want to make sure people have masks for yourself and for your little ones. Hand sanitizer, like sanitizing wipes to help keep your family safe if you do have to leave and go to a hotel or to someone else’s home.”

COVID-19 is going to make this hurricane season a bit trickier for emergency responders and will change how shelters operate.

Keith Acree with NC Emergency Management says, “We’re going to need more space. We’re going to need more time to actually put people into these shelters and you know we’re going to have to screen them.”

Emergency responders say with that in mind now is when eastern Carolina residents should start thinking about what they will do if you need to evacuate and whether you may have relatives you could stay with in an area where a storm wouldn’t be affecting

Emergency responders say another change to hurricane response this year is expected to be less help from other states when it comes to clean up efforts. They are also trying to get shelter staff prepared with personal protective equipment.

Copyright 2020 WITN. All rights reserved.

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