Governor McCrory Urges Residents to Be Aware and Prepare for Emergencies
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 919-814-2100
Raleigh, N.C. – Governor Pat McCrory has proclaimed September as North Carolina Preparedness Month and is encouraging North Carolina families, businesses and schools to be aware and prepare for all types of emergencies.
“While this hurricane season has been quiet on the East Coast, Tropical Storm Erika reminds us we must be ready for all types of disasters at any given moment,” Governor McCrory said. “Now is the time to get your emergency kits together, talk with your family and practice what to do when an emergency strikes.”
The governor added that the easiest, most economical way people can protect their families and businesses is to plan ahead, know the risks they face, gather supplies and discuss their emergency plans.
Last year alone, the state experienced 36 tornadoes, 514 severe thunderstorms, 172 hailstorms where hail was at least one inch, and 50 incidents of flash flooding.
The governor’s designation coincides with National Preparedness Month, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
“Emergency preparedness should be at the forefront of everyone’s mind, especially during peak hurricane season,” Public Safety Secretary Frank Perry said. “Families, schools, businesses, government agencies and places of worship should make and practice emergency plans. Whether it is a hurricane, tornado, flood, earthquake or snowstorm, it is vital that everyone know what to do and where to go when danger threatens.”
Several landmark storms have impacted North Carolina during the months of September and October, providing lessons that ultimately strengthened the state’s emergency response. In 2004, the back-to-back storms Tropical Depression Frances and Tropical Storm Ivan caused severe flooding and landslides – the latter blamed for eight deaths, destruction and numerous road closures. In 1999, Hurricane Floyd caused record flooding across much of the state claiming 52 lives, submerging 30 downtown areas and causing an estimated $5.5 billion in damages. Ten years before that, Hurricane Hugo, which devastated Charleston, S.C., claimed seven lives and left behind nearly $1 billion in damages in North Carolina.
“Each and every natural or man-made emergency has enhanced North Carolina’s ability to plan and respond to any situation through its efforts to cultivate stronger partnerships, develop more comprehensive plans and obtain innovative assets,” said Mike Sprayberry, director of Emergency Management. “We are working with our partners to develop tools to help people with intellectual and developmental disabilities get prepared for any type of disaster. The ReadyNC website has been translated into Spanish so Latino residents can take steps to be aware and prepare. Ultimately, preparedness begins at home, so people need to develop their individual plans and make an emergency supply kit.”
For more information on how to ensure your family is disaster ready, go to ReadyNC.org or download the free ReadyNC app, which features real time weather, traffic and shelter information.