Tropical storm Florence is highly expected to grow to hurricane strength over the next few days. Coastal residents from Florida north throughout the southeast should be paying attention. Look at your schedule for next week and consider what may need to be adjusted based on the future forecasts and paths. Begin taking pro-active steps.
Being proactive is empowering. Check your schedule for next week. Update your contact list and tell your family and friends of your plan. Have a point of central contact. If you are able, call on neighbors, check-in and see if they are paying attention. Evaluate your personal hurricane and storm supplies; update and replace anything you might have used. Assess, modify and/or update any possible evacuation plans based on your location, and/or any changes to your family status.
Check your shutters and window coverings; test your generator; re-organize and familiarize yourself with all of your supplies and hardware. Check batteries in portable tools; locate tools you might need; walk your property to consider what you may need to do based on the storms path. All decisions are yours. You are in control.
Due to coastal populations, a southeast storm means adding almost a day to any movement plans based on roads and traffic density. Being proactive now helps to keep any future stress level low. You are in control. If you have pets, additional plans may be needed.
(Hurricane Center) At 1100 AM AST (1500 UTC), the center of Tropical Storm Florence was located near latitude 24.5 North, longitude 54.3 West. Florence is moving toward the west near 7 mph (11 km/h), and this general motion is expected to continue during the next couple of days. A west-northwestward to northwestward motion with an increase in forward speed is expected by the middle of next week. (more)
**TIP** If you live on or near the southeast coast, one possible proactive measure is to make a list of hotels further inland that you would consider evacuating to. Make that list today/tomorrow and follow updates of the storms’ progress.
Depending on later information you might call in advance and make a reservation; you can always cancel if not needed. It is better to have a secondary evacuation place established in advance. Being proactive reduces stress. Even if you wait until much later to cancel, it is better to pay a cancellation fee (usually one night charge) than to not have a plan on where to go. Trust me, it’s worth it. Protect your family. Make the list of possibilities today, make the booking decision in the next 72 hrs.
Look over the National Hurricane Center resources for planning assistance.