Folks on the northeastern coast of the United States have been advised to do an evacuation “test run,” in case Earl decides to come calling.  From the National Hurricane Center in Miami, as of today (9-2), a tropical storm warning has been issued to persons along Connecticut and Rhode Island coasts into Massachusetts.  Earl is heading toward the Outer Banks of North Carolina with tropical system winds of 140 mph, and higher gusts.  The center of Earl is approximately 300 miles south of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. 

Even though Earl may remain at sea, and run parallel to the coast, a storm surge from the hurricane could cause damage.  National Hurricane Director, Bill Read, said he expects big waves to hit the North Carolina coast, and by Friday, Cape Cod and Long Island could see big swells and dangerous rip currents.  Mr. Reed suggested that he would recommend advance planning by persons living in this area, just in case the storm hits the coast. 

Suggestions that we want to repeat in planning for a disaster are as follows:

  •     Plan ahead;
  •     Keep your cell phone charged;     
  •     Secure your home;
  •     Have a plan that includes your family, elderly, and pets;
  •      Be sure your insurance papers are in order;
  •      Have a 3-day supply of food and water for each individual;   
  •      Freeze gallon jugs of water ahead of time;
  •       Be sure you have a manual can opener;
  •      Purchase fresh fruit and vegetables in addition to canned goods;
  •       Have a supply of pet food and water bowls.
  •        Be sure you have all medicines;
  •        Notify next of kin or friends that you may be needing to stay with   them until the all-clear;

In the event of a hurricane hitting your town, do not go back until the authorities give permission.  Many times, downed power lines or other hazards cause injuries. 

With Labor Day approaching, we hope residents of these areas will have the “all-clear,” and be able to enjoy their holiday weekend.  However, listen to the professionals and take precautions, as they know what they are talking about.