STATEWIDE, NC (WECT) – Governor Bev Perdue issued a statement Tuesday urging all North Carolina residents to prepare for Hurricane Irene.
The governor said the state's veteran emergency management team is ready for the forecasted hurricane, but citizens need to be prepared as well.
"Please make sure you have three days worth of food, water and supplies," said Perdue in a statement. "You may lose water or electrical power during the storm, and grocery stores and other businesses may be closed. Also make sure you know the evacuation routes in case you must leave the area."
Perdue explained that it only takes a short time to put your hurricane survival kit together, so do that now.
"We will be ready if Hurricane Irene reaches North Carolina," Gov. Perdue said. "Our teams are already lining up supplies, trucks and resources to reach anywhere the storm might touch."
Gov. Perdue has directed state Emergency Management officials to take steps including:
- Placing the North Carolina National Guard personnel on standby
- Establishing coordination with the National Hurricane Center and National Weather Service
- Bringing FEMA's coordinating officer into the Emergency Operations Center, which is standard practice.
- Starting daily video teleconference calls with FEMA National and FEMA Region 4 (Southeast)
- Checking and updating equipment at the Emergency Management warehouse (water, MREs, cots, blankets, portable toilets, sandbags and bagging machines, generators.)
- Planning where to pre-position food, water and other supplies.
- Making plans to activate the NCEM Regional Coordination Center in Kinston. The RCC coordinates with the counties to see what they need.
- Ordering the State Emergency Response Team to activate Thursday morning. SERT is composed of all involved state agencies, private sector and volunteer organizations, such as: NCDOT, DENR, Agriculture, Commerce, utility companies, Red Cross and Baptist Men.
- Begin checking with public water and wastewater treatment operations to see if they need assistance before or after the storm.
- Developing 24-hour staffing plans through the weekend.
- If needed, the Gov. is prepared to issue executive orders declaring a state of emergency, which allows the state to tap into federal resources to recover from the storm, and enacting other emergency measures to make it easier to restore power, remove debris and transport essential goods and services.