PENDER COUNTY – The 2020 Hurricane Season is predicted to have an above-average number of storms. This is difficult news for anyone who is suffering from “COVID-19 Fatigue.”
“Pender County residents have the opportunity now to prepare for a hurricane and the pandemic,” said Carson Smith, Pender County Emergency Manager. “We encourage residents to prepare for Before, During, and After a Storm.”
Before the storm is the time to think about shelter and supplies.
The first step is: Make A Plan. As we continue social distancing and taking necessary safety measures, decide: Where will you go?
“In the event of evacuation, know your zone,” said Smith. “Preplan your route by selecting a destination.”
Identify the home of a family member or friend where you can stay. Or locate an affordable hotel where you can stay.
Public shelters set up by the local health department and Red Cross should be a refuge of last resort. Due to social distancing guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and the state health department, local shelters will require a sparse configuration of distancing. Officials will check the body temperatures of evacuees signing into a shelter.
Secondly, build your emergency kit.
“Now is the time to stock your essentials and have an emergency kit,” Smith said.
Supplies such as non-perishable foods, water, flashlights, batteries, a transistor radio, a manual can opener, medications, pet supplies, cash, and important documents secured in a watertight bag are essentials for an emergency kit. However, during a pandemic, you must include face coverings, hand sanitizer, and disinfecting wipes.
Every family member should have a seven-day supply of medications and toiletries, food, and water as well as a supply of hand sanitizers and face coverings. While preparing, remember to have a seven-day supply of pet supplies and pet medications, if applicable.
During a storm stay informed. Know your reliable sources of information. Don’t trust chat boards and rumors on social media. Pender County Emergency Management will post announcements on their website, Facebook page, and to local news media. Do not venture out during a storm.
After a storm flooding and down power lines may occur. Do not drive through water moving over roadways. Be aware of fire ants, bees, and use caution when operating a chainsaw. If you use a generator, do not operate it indoors.
For more information, watch our Pender County Emergency Management website or Facebook. If you have not signed up for the CodeRed alert system, register for free at https://pendercountync.gov/em/special-disaster-information/emergency-notification-system/ or call 910-259-1210 for details.