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Gordon, Leslie, Oscar: NOAA names 2018 hurricanes

Hurricane season is almost upon us, and researchers say they expect it to be a busy one. 

NOAA earlier this month released its list of Atlantic tropical and subtropical storm names for 2018 and they are: Alberto, Beryl, Chris, Debby, Ernesto, Florence, Gordon and Helene, Isaac, Joyce, Kirk, Leslie, Michael, Nadine, Oscar, Patty, Rafael, Sara, Tony, Valerie  and William. 

To encourage North Carolinians to prepare, Gov. Roy Cooper proclaimed this week as Hurricane Preparedness Week. 

Hurricane season runs from June 1 through Nov. 30. North Carolina is one of the leading states for hurricane damage. 

Communities across the state still recovering from Hurricane Matthew know well how devastating hurricanes can be. 

Taking steps to prepare for hurricanes and other disasters can help people recover more quickly. Cooper urged families to use this week to discuss emergency plans and update emergency supplies. 

An emergency supply kit should contain enough supplies not just to get through the storm, but for the potentially lengthy aftermath. Make sure to have enough non-perishable food and water to last each family member three to seven days. Other essential items include copies of insurance papers and identification sealed in a watertight plastic bag, first-aid kit, weather radio and batteries, prescription medicines, sleeping bag or blankets, changes of clothes, hygiene items such as toothbrush, toothpaste, soap and deodorant, cash and pet supplies. 

Hurricane Preparedness Week is also the ideal time to review homeowners and renters insurance policies and consider purchasing flood insurance, state emergency management officials recommend. 

During storms, people should stay tuned into a trusted local news source and keep a battery-powered radio nearby for weather and evacuation information. They also need to heed the warnings of state and local officials and evacuate quickly when told to do so. 

“It’s critical that people prepare themselves and their families now for emergencies,” said Public Safety Secretary Erik A. Hooks. “Don’t wait until the next storm threatens to make sure you have the supplies and plans in place to weather a potential disaster.” 

Hooks reiterated that the most dangerous threat from hurricanes and tropical storms is flooding and storm surge, and that a storm does not even have to be classified as a tropical system to cause serious damage. 

More information on hurricanes and overall emergency preparedness can be found online at ReadyNC.org.