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FEMA: Make preparations now

September 12, 2018

FLORENCE, S.C. – Now is the time to prepare for the impending arrival of Hurricane Florence, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

A spokesman for the agency said history shows storms can change tracks quickly and it is necessary to continue to listen for instructions from local, state and federal officials.

“You should expect that services will be disrupted for an extended time,” the spokesman said. “Be ready for: power and phone service outages, roads blocked by flood and/or debris, and water and sewer outages.”

FEMA is also coordinating with state and local officials.

Richard Skipper, a local insurance agent, also offered preperation tips.

He said people should picture the things they will need. Skipper added that the websites of FEMA (fema.gov) and Ready.gov are helpful.

He recommended securing outdoor equipment, making sure important papers are in a safe, waterproofed and easily accessed location, and making sure not to forget about pets and prescription medication.

Skipper said that Hurricane Matthew was a different kind of storm, because of the drier conditions in the Pee Dee now as compared to then. Hurricane Matthew struck in 2016. Skipper said that Hurricane Florence is expected to bring faster winds, though.

The insurance industry, particularly larger companies, sets aside a certain part of premiums for disasters like hurricanes, according to Skipper. He said claims and damage assessments may take a while because of the volumes of claims.

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