RALEIGH, NC (WBTV) - North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory is telling people along the coast to prepare for tropical weather in the coming week ahead of a possible tropical storm.
McCrory said in a news release Sunday that the system located southeast of Cape Hatteras is expected to strengthen slightly into a tropical storm over the next few days.
The release said it could cause heavy downpours, increased rip currents and wave heights later this week along North Carolina's coast.
"While the current forecast does not appear at this time to be a major threat to North Carolina, we know from experience that the storm track can shift quickly," Governor McCrory said. "Five years ago much of eastern North Carolina was still reeling from the effects of Hurricane Irene. These tropical systems can pack a powerful punch; those who are prepared ahead of time will fare better."
Friday, Governor McCrory declared September as North Carolina Preparedness Month and reminded residents to discuss their emergency plans and update their emergency supply kits.
Public Safety Secretary Frank L. Perry said state emergency management officials are coordinating with local officials to ensure they have what they need and are going through checklists to be sure their teams and supplies are ready.
To ensure your family is storm ready, he suggested:
- Be sure your emergency supply kits have enough bottled water and non-perishable food to sustain each family member for three to seven days. Include a weather radio, flashlight, extra batteries, toiletries, change of clothes, blankets or sleeping bag, rain gear and appropriate footwear. Also include copies of important documents, such as birth certificates and insurance policies.
- Plan for your pets. Gather supplies for your pets and put them in an easily-accessible container.
- Prepare your home. Clean out gutters and clear property of debris that could damage buildings in strong winds. Supplies such as lumber and shutters, should be purchased now, and window casings pre-drilled.
- Determine if you are in a floodplain or flood-prone area.
- Know evacuation routes for your area. Listen to local officials and evacuate as instructed.
- Stay tuned to local news for the latest advisories from the National Weather Service and National Hurricane Center (NHC), as well as state and local emergency management officials.