News release

Preparing for Hurricane Season

With peak hurricane season upon us, the provincial Emergency Management Office (EMO) is reminding Nova Scotians of the importance of being prepared.

While this year's hurricane season has had a fairly quiet start, forecasters still predict an above-normal number of storms.

The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration now expects that the season will produce a total of 12 to 15 named storms, with seven to nine becoming hurricanes, and three or four becoming major hurricanes.

"The Atlantic hurricane season runs from the beginning of June until the end of November, with September usually being the peak month," said Ernest Fage, Minister of Emergency Management. "As hurricanes can be very unpredictable, it is important for people to plan and prepare in advance."

To encourage people to become better prepared, EMO is expanding its public education efforts, launching a new poster and advertising campaign. "With the help of our emergency measures co-ordinators across the province, EMO will be distributing the new poster as well as information on preparedness activities to communities throughout Nova Scotia," said Craig MacLaughlan, EMO's CEO and deputy head.

In the event of bad weather, Nova Scotians are encouraged to listen for updated weather information or public safety bulletins and take any necessary precautions. There are also several things that can be done to prepare prior to a weather-related emergency:

-- Maintain an emergency kit that includes items such as a battery-powered or wind-up radio and flashlight, extra batteries, canned food, a supply of drinkable water, clothing, blankets, medication, cash in smaller bills and a first aid kit.

-- Secure the home and property. Secure objects that could be torn loose or blown around. Protect the home as much as possible from heavy rains and floods.

-- Choose a shelter area away from windows, such as a basement, storm cellar or closet beneath the stairs.

-- Choose a meeting place for family members and set up some form of communication to notify each other of whereabouts and safety.

For more information on personal preparedness, see the Nova Scotia Emergency Management Office website at www.gov.ns.ca/emo .

FOR BROADCAST USE:

Nova Scotia's Emergency Management Office has one word of advice as peak hurricane season begins: Prepare.

E-M-O is encouraging people to listen for weather advisories or warnings and take these four steps if a storm is approaching:

One: choose a safe place for the family.

Two: have an emergency kit packed and easily accessible.

Three: secure the home to reduce hazards and protect property from storm damage.

Four: choose a meeting place so family members can find one another.

For more information on emergency preparedness, visit E-M-O's website at W-W-W dot gov dot N-S dot C-A slash E-M-O .

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Media Contact:

Craig MacLaughlan
Emergency Management Office 902-424-5620 E-mail:
Andrew Lathem
Emergency Management Office 902-5620 E-mail: