As Hurricane Matthew approaches the U.S., Florida Gov. Rick Scott declared a state of emergency advising coastal residents “If you’re able to go early, leave now.”
The storm currently devastating Cuba is expected make landfall in the continental U.S. early Thursday night, with the outer bands hitting the coast earlier Thursday. The Florida National Guardsmen have activated over 500 members with another 6,000 standing by on alert, in the event of a large-scale evacuation or response after the storm.
How Can You Prepare?
Before Hurricane Matthew hits, storm preparation remains key. Follow this basic checklist to make sure you are prepared:
- Nonperishable Food (3 day supply for each member of family)
- 1 Gallon of Water per day for each member of family
- Batteries and Battery-operated Radio
- Emergency Contacts – chances are you will lose power and cell phones may discharge – have backup & hard copies
- Evacuation Plan – know and familiarize yourself with your evacuation route
- Secure Home – hurricane shutters, plywood, gather up loose debris & branches
Matthew’s Projected Path:
A general overview of the timing of the storm has been predicted by the National Hurricane Center – first striking Florida’s east coast Thursday, Friday and possibly lingering into early Saturday in the northern parts of the State. Georgia is expected to be hit Friday into Saturday with the storm continuing northward to threaten the Carolinas later Friday, possibly continuing into Sunday.
Our recommendation is that if travel can be avoided from Thursday through Monday, it should be. Airlines have already provided “waivers” that give travelers the ability to change their travels without incurring the airline change fee. The rain and wind effects of Hurricane Matthew can go on for days causing disruption of flights even after the storm has passed. Travelers who can re-book their travels, should contact their JTB agent immediately.
Keeping up with Matthew:
As conditions deteriorate in the Bahamas, we recommend keeping a close eye on the storms movements. Hurricane Matthew is now just north of Cuba and has re-intensified as a Category 3 hurricane.
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