Pike County prepares for severe weather

Published 6:08 pm Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Anna Green

This week is Alabama Severe Weather Awareness Week and Pike County is taking special precautions to prepare for the upcoming tornado and hurricane seasons.

Peak tornado season begins in March and ends in late May. Hurricane season will be from the first of June until the end of November.

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Larry Davis, the emergency management director for Pike County, said he emergency management service has 30 to 40 booklets to give out to residents advising about severe weather.

“We don’t have very many booklets, but we are going to send some to schools, and hand them out at city meetings. These are pretty nice booklets, they cover everything you need to know,” Davis said. “In addition, we will be sending off our sirens to a testing facility to make sure they are in proper working order.”

Davis said the best thing that a family can do in preparation for severe weather is have a “what if” plan.

“Know what you are going to do and where you can evacuate to. It may be hard to sit there and plan it out, but it’s essential to know what you should do if a catastrophe strikes,” Davis said. “It’s only a matter of time before a tornado sets down in a large trailer park, and there will be devastation. We have to be prepared for that.”

Setting aside a little bit of money is another thing that Davis suggests that residents of Pike County should do in case of disaster.

“You should set aside a little bit of cash in case of a disaster. Make it a part of your life plan. Cash gets you where you need to go, and nothing else can replace that.”

In addition to cash, Davis said that it is important to have the basic essentials on hand in case of a catastrophe.

“Have your basic first aid kit on hand, and have a supply of medicine. It’s also important to have plenty of bottled water and canned food,” Davis said. “We want folks to be able to take care of themselves for at least 72 hours without power. Be sure to purchase a weather alert radio so that you can be informed about possible dangers.”

The Pike County Emergency Management team depends on volunteers. Call Larry Davis at 566-8272 for more information on volunteering, or for questions concerning severe weather preparedness. For additional information on severe weather and how to stay safe during a storm, visit www.ema.alabama.gov