Today’s Editorial July 31: Take time to prepare

By no means is it time to panic.

But there is a system forming in the Atlantic that could develop into a depression and eventually in to a hurricane.

It’s a relatively new system, so we don’t know what’s going to happen with it yet.

However, seeing the system taking shape east of the Southern Windward Islands and heading west is a good reminder to us that yes, we are in hurricane season and if you’re not prepared, get busy.

History has shown that a lack of hurricane awareness and preparation are common threads among all major hurricane disasters. You can reduce the effects of a hurricane disaster by knowing your vulnerability and what actions you should take.

Part of that preparation means having pantries stocked with enough non-perishable food to last you and your family at least three days.

People who were here during Ivan would advise anyone riding out a storm to have enough provisions to last for a couple of weeks, at least.

Go ahead and make that trip to the hardware store or the supermarket to stock up. Don’t wait until an alert or a watch have been issued. Crowded supermarkets when a storm is approaching make for frazzled shoppers.

Too, the supplies you need to ride out a storm may not be available if you wait until the last minute.

Now is the time to make sure you have shutters on hand. Go ahead and do a practice run at installing them.

Make sure your important papers like passports, family records, medical records, insurance policies and warranties are in a waterproof container.

If you don’t have family or business hurricane plan, make one now.

Determine which functioning shelter is closest to you and how you will get there if you decide to evacuate from your home.

People with pets need to also make plans for their animals. Shelters don’t accept them.

Cayman Free Press offers a hurricane supplement that tells readers what to expect and actions to take before, during and after a storm. You can get one from our offices at the Compass Centre on Shedden Road or look at the e-version on our website, www.caycompass.com

As usual, the Caymanian Compass editorial staff will continue to monitor the system, that is showing signs of development, through the Cayman Islands Meteorology Office and various websites.

Again, it isn’t time to panic, but it is time to prepare.

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