Reading the comments on the Facebook page for Bryan Norcross, Hurricane Specialist at The Weather Channel is bemusing. There are quite a few from people in the storm track wondering what to do or what will happen. One person said, my house is one block from the ocean, should I board up the windows? Uh, yes, then evacuate. Others ask if the hurricane will hit them. They’re Internet-savvy enough to be on Facebook yet can’t find hurricane information on their own. It may be that most of them have never been through a major hurricane (not that any hurricane is minor) and think it’s akin to a big thunderstorm.
Norcross responds to the questions, saying:
For everyone asking about their particular location, can’t say for sure what’s going to happen except that large areas likely will have a significant hit. At the coast or any bay, MAJOR life-threatening flooding from the ocean is likely. Inland, a long period of high winds and heavy rain on saturated ground is likely to bring down many trees cutting power and communications. Transportation by any means may be difficult for some time…so water and food at home is the best defense.
Irene remains on track, unfortunately. It appears clear that we cannot now escape a significant, perhaps devastating hurricane event in at least part of North Carolina, the Mid-Atlantic, the Northeast including NYC, and New England… including inland sections 100 or more miles from the coast. Timing: Sat in NC, Sun around NYC then into New Eng later Sun into Mon. EVERYONE in the threat zone needs to plan for being stuck with no power, water or communications. Have ONE WEEK of supplies on hand.
If I was in a coastal area on the storm track, I’d drive 150 miles inland and find a hotel. This is not your normal hurricane.