Perdue issues hurricane preparedness advisory

Posted May 26, 2010 1:10 p.m. EDT
Updated May 26, 2010 4:54 p.m. EDT

— Less than a week before the start of the 2010 Atlantic Ocean hurricane season starts, Gov. Beverly Perdue urged North Carolina residents Wednesday to make preparations in advance of any storm.

“North Carolinians understand well the dangers of hurricanes and tropical storms, and we know that the coast isn’t the only place that is vulnerable this time of year," Perdue said. "Storms that track inland have brought devastation across the Tar Heel state, and that means I have one message for all of our residents: No matter where you live, you need to be prepared. We all need to be disaster-ready at all times.”

People should assemble a hurricane kit, map out an evacuation route, put together a list of out-of-state contacts and make arrangements to care for their pets, she said. A hurricane kit should include bottled water, non-perishable food, medications, toiletries, cash, flashlights, batteries, a portable radio, bedding, clothes, insurance papers and first-aid items, she said.

State Department of Insurance officials also recommended that people in flood-prone areas buy flood insurance since homeowner's policies don't cover damage from rising waters.

One in five hurricanes and tropical storms affect North Carolina during a typical year, and Perdue said that, despite a projected budget deficit, the state is prepared to provide necessary assistance before, during and after a storm.

"I feel very comfortable that I have the ability with the General Assembly – the leaders who understand this so well – that, if 'the big one' comes, North Carolina will have the resources to do what we want to do and should do for our people," she said.

North Carolina State University researchers last month predicted above-normal hurricane activity in the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico this year. Their forecast calls for 15 to 18 named storms, including eight to 11 hurricanes.