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In Case Of Emergency, Read Blog

A Citizen’s Eye View of Public Preparedness

In (But Leaving) Path Of Tropical Storm (Possibly Hurricane) Hanna

September 5th, 2008 · 2 Comments

I am in the Outer Banks of North Carolina this morning where my family and I have been vacationing. The area is getting ready for landfall, sometime later tonight and somewhere on the Carolina coast, of Tropical Storm Hanna — which forecasters say may strengthen to a Category 1 hurricane by nightfall.

I will be driving home with my family this morning a day earlier than we originally. Though the county, Dare, is under a state of emergency, no evacuation is planned for these barrier islands. We are leaving so I don’t have to drive through the storm as it heads up the eastern seaboard.

It is fascinating to watch how an area like this, which are used to these threats, prepares for them. Authorities and most of the public take it seriously (football games schedules, offices are closed, newspapers are filled with ‘news you can use’ advice). But they also seem to put everything into its perspective — ie. we should prepare seriously but we’ll get through it. It’s just part of life here.

The question is how you transmit this preparedness ethic across the nation to areas, including to my home area of New York, that are not as ready for these potential disasters. It may be impossible without the constant natural reminders this area receives every year around this time. But I think it is worth trying to at least see whether anything can be learned. 

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Tags: Hurricane Preparedness

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Harry // Sep 5, 2008 at 9:45 am

    NY isn’t quite pushing the panic button yet, but they have called in CERT to staff the EOC for the weekend and warned us to be ready to staff evac shelters if the storm hits too hard. Most of us aren’t really expecting this to be anything worth panicking over, but we are warming up just in case.

  • 2 Valerie // Sep 5, 2008 at 11:21 am

    Harry – What exactly will CERT be doing in the EOC? The local OEM is getting a CERT program off the ground but they aren’t sure what to do with the people they trained.

    And do you staff shelters with the Red Cross or just CERT?

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