Prepare now for storm season

Published 11:40 pm Sunday, May 28, 2006

By Staff
I loved hurricanes until I met Katrina.
I didn't live close enough to the coast to experience much more than wind and rain, but then I met people who had lost everything, people who could not find their family members, people who had to start life over again in a new city.
That experience taught me respect for Mother Nature - and taught me that covering a hurricane isn't nearly the fun I always thought it was.
Everyone I've met in Brewton has had that same experience, although with a different name: Ivan.
In the two months I've lived here, nearly every person I've met has told me that Brewton hasn't looked the same since Ivan.
But everyone here also seems to have learned some lessons from that storm that surprised the community.
And I hope we all heed those lessons as hurricane season begins again this week.
On Wednesday, we'll have a special section filled with reminders about hurricane safety, including information about what supplies to stock up on and how to use generators.
Also Wednesday, we'll look at the ways our community and our county are prepared for the storm season.
It's amazing to think that just a few years ago, most of us didn't give hurricane season much thought.
Our county's new emergency mangagement director, David Adams, has a tough job ahead of him, as do all of the people who are involved in preparing our county for the worst and seeing that we make it through to the end of the storm season.
Last week I had the opportunity to sit in on a meeting of various health care agencies and other officials in the county. The Coalition for a Healthier Escambia County devoted its two-hour meeting to discussion of hurricane preparation.
We all have a stake in preparing for the storms with our flashlights and peanut butter, but this group of people - from EMA's Adams to the hospitals to the health department to Red Cross to the department of human services to Jefferson Davis Community College - will be on the front lines if any storm hits.
And they will be helping not only the members of our community but the people who evacuate the storm and wind up here as well.
They deserve a hand not only for the way that they are preparing but for the way that they care about all of us.
Now let's just hope we can keep all those hurricane plans on the shelf this year.
Kerry Whipple Bean is publisher of The Brewton Standard. She can be reached at 251-867-4876 or by e-mail at

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