Hurricane Preparedness Week starts today.
The week, which ends Saturday, is meant to remind the public to prepare now for future severe storms, Columbia County Emergency Services Director Pam Tucker said.
"People need to think about it now. Start preparing now," she said. "It's best to stay ready all the time."
Though the official hurricane season runs from June 1 through Nov. 30, hurricanes seem to occur with more frequency and during other times in the year, such as January, Tucker said.
Preparation methods include developing a family communication plan; designating a safe room, which should be the innermost room on the lowest floor of a home; and stocking up on such supplies as three days of nonperishable food items and bottled water for the entire family and pets, a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration radio, pillows, blankets, a first-aid kit, and a battery-operated radio.
In the event of a hurricane watch, Tucker suggested that homeowners immediately secure outdoor objects like patio furniture, grills and hanging baskets.
Those living in mobile homes should identify a safe place they can travel to in case of a hurricane watch, she said.
Motorists should avoid driving during severe weather.
"Never drive during high winds and flooding," Tucker warned. "Most people who die during floods are killed in vehicles, because it looks like there's a road there and the road has washed away."
For information on hurricane preparedness, call Tucker's office at (706) 868-3303, or see the county's Web site at www.columbiacountyga.gov.
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