NC Commissioner Troxler: Be Prepared for Hurricane Season

With a busy hurricane season predicted this year, North Carolina farmers need to be sure to review their storm preparation plans and storm response plans to be prepared. Check their back-up equipment like generators and make sure they have important phone numbers and business information secured but within quick access.

  • I’ll be honest, I’d really rather not talk about hurricane season this year, but hoping we don’t have any bad storms or hurricanes is not a plan and doesn’t help anyone be prepared.
  • The N.C. State Climate Office recently wrote about this year’s forecast in a blog, explaining some of the weather conditions behind this year’s predictions and ways people can be prepared.
  • As individuals and families, it is always a good idea to have a plan and make sure everyone who needs to know, knows what that plan is to be as prepared as possible.
  • For farmers and agribusiness owners, it is even more critical as many have workers relying on them, livestock to tend and their livelihoods on the line.  
  • The national outlook for 2024 is forecasting 17 to 25 named storms, 8 to 13 hurricanes and 4 to 7 major hurricanes.
  • N.C. State University’s weather researchers predict 10 to 12 hurricanes and 15 to 20 named storms.
  • To help farmers be ready, on our Emergency Programs page, we have a N.C. Farm Emergency Plan Template that is a great resource for farms and covers items that may be forgotten in an emergency.
  • Downloading and filling this out before there is an emergency, plus reviewing the plan with key members of your farm team is the most important part of having a plan in place.
  • The plan has check lists and spaces for important contact information, location and identification of farm chemicals, biosecurity considerations, items to include in a family emergency supply kit, plus First-Aid kit essentials and needed hygiene products.
  • There are also segments that focus on emergency supply needs for livestock and pets, evacuation suggestions for livestock and steps to take in an emergency to prepare livestock.
  • Train all workers on your Emergency Action Plan.
  • Additional steps to consider include:
  • Post evacuation procedures and escape routes
    • Post procedures for Checking-In post Emergency Event
    • Identify special tasks such as rescue and medical duties and the employees who are to perform them
    • Identify First-Aid/other supply storage locations.
  • Again, there is a lot of good information available on our Emergency Programs webpage. Please check out the Farm Emergency Plan Template.
  • I hope forecasters are wrong about the 2024 storm season, but with June being the start of Hurricane season, now is the time to review your plan with all your farm team members.