North Carolina and three other southern states lead the nation in the number of billion-dollar weather-related disasters since 1980. Most of those disasters are tropical-storm related.
The North Carolina coast is the most vulnerable to a direct hurricane strike, but inland cities and towns across the state can also be devastated by the high winds and potential tornados, storm surges, flooding and landslides from hurricanes and tropical storms.
During hurricane season, from June 1 to November 30, you should have a family emergency plan in place and a family emergency supplies kit assembled.
- Know your evacuation routes and locate your local emergency shelters.
- Don't get caught by surprise. There is not enough time to think of everything you need to do when a hurricane gets close.
- As a hurricane moves closer to your area, begin monitoring the weather reports every hour.
- Listen for hurricane watches and warnings.
- Put fuel in all vehicles and withdraw some cash from the bank. Gas stations and banks may be closed after a hurricane.
- If authorities ask you to evacuate, do so promptly.
- If you evacuate, be alert to flooded or washed-out roads. Just a few inches of water can float a car. Remember: Turn Around, Don't Drown.
- Keep a photo I.D. that shows your home address. This may become important when asking a police officer or National Guard member for permission to re-enter your neighborhood.
- There is never enough time to get ready for nature's fiercest weather. Give yourself and your family a head start.