Dorian on Wednesday, August 28. Image: NOAA

“Georgia and the Carolinas should expect heavy rain and winds associated with Hurricane Dorian over the weekend and into Monday,” says the Charlotte Observer.

Carolinians know that a storm track prediction is helpful, but not certain. Even though Florida seems to be the aim of the storm, it could change track, curve around to the Carolinas, or …?

Checklist from Naples Daily News

Electric power and hurricanes are often in the news at the same time, which is one reason we mention these storms. While the Carolinas are not in the headlines now, or for this particular storm, being prepared is important. The Naples (Florida) Daily News has a two-page hurricane prep checklist that may be useful. Florida Today runs an annual preparedness checklist. Florida knows hurricanes.

From a power perspective, have batteries, fully-loaded chargers, and your phone charged up ahead of a storm. Flashlights are important, too.

The American Red Cross ran a story recently about being ready for an active hurricane season. Image: Red Cross website.

The American Red Cross has a website for preparedness. Among its top 10 suggestions are, in part:

  • Get your home ready. Cover windows with storm shutters or plywood. Store outside items, such as lawn furniture and trash cans, to prevent them from being moved by high winds and possibly hurting someone.
  • If someone already has a disaster kit, now is the time make sure the food and water is still okay to consume and that copies of important documents are up to date.
  • Keep insurance policies, documents, and other valuables in a safe-deposit box. You may need quick, easy access to these documents. Keep them in a safe place less likely to be damaged if a hurricane causes flooding. Take pictures on a phone and keep copies of important documents and files on a USB flash drive that you can carry with you on your key ring.
  • Prepare to evacuate quickly and know your routes and destinations.
  • Fill your car’s gas tank, in case an evacuation notice is issued.
  • Download the free Red Cross Emergency App for real-time weather alerts, open shelters and expert advice on hurricanes. The App includes an “I’m Safe” feature that helps people check on loved ones. Search “American Red Cross” in app stores, or go to redcross.org/apps.

Wind field projection for Dorian as of August 28. Image: NOAA

The last suggestion shows how our preparedness is changing. One Red Cross story notes how voice activated home assistants can help people stay current on storms: “Skills for Alexa now include critical first aid instruction and important hurricane safety information. Red Cross blood donors can use Alexa to schedule blood donations on Alexa-enabled devices.”

In the Carolinas “there is an app for that, too.” Check the North Carolina app here and the South Carolina app here as sources for  emergency information. But listen to varied sources, too. Stay tuned to media for the latest. Stay safe.

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Feature image of Dorian on August 28 from the National Hurricane Center.