Red Cross offers advice on preparing for a hurricane

VIDEO: Red Cross offers advice on preparing for a hurricane

CHARLESTON COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - The Red Cross is sharing advice on how families can prepare for a hurricane including everything from what you need to buy to putting together an evacuation plan.

On Sunday the S.C. Emergency Management recommended for the members of the state's response team to begin reviewing plans in preparation for Hurricane Mathew.

It's not clear what the impact will be at this time, but local and state officials are watching the hurricane's path,

Regional Communication Officer for American Red Cross, Jennifer Heisler says you don't want to wait too late to prepare.

"There is more than 30 people a day, some estimate, moving to the area and a lot of them have never been through a hurricane," Heisler said. "We've had some tropical storms earlier in the year, but we don't want people to be complacent we want them to start thinking now what they might have to do should they need to evacuate later."

Local Red Cross officials say preparing can be summed up into three steps, building a kit, making a plan and being informed.

The Red Cross advises that an emergency kit include a gallon of water per person per day, non-perishable food, a flashlight, extra batteries, medications and copies of important documents. You should have enough food and water to last three to five days.

Families are also encouraged to create a personal evacuation plan including planning routes to local shelters. Red Cross officials advise that you make sure you plan accordingly for family members with special needs and how you will care for your pets.

"You can also make the phone calls now should you need to stay at a hotel or with friends and family," Heisler said.

It's also important for residents to know what zone they live in. Local authorities will announce evacuations based on pre-designated zones.

"When you are preparing to evacuate we realize that a lot of people they want to stay they want to stay with their homes, but truly if you need to leave you want to go," Heisler said. "It's much more important to save your family than your house."

The Red Cross is preparing as well by checking on the availability of volunteers and working with state and local emergency management partners.

You can find your zone and determine your risks at the following websites:

For more information on other ways you can prepare for a hurricane check out the Charleston County Hurricane Guide.

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