Hurricane Frances is not expected to bring the same intensity to our area here in the Florida Panhandle as she has to the lower half of the state.
The National Hurricane Center says it expects Frances to loose much of its punch as it moves across the peninsula and should emerge into the Gulf of Mexico only as a tropical storm.
Area emergency services personnel are asking local residents to be prepared just in case Frances revs up before she hits our shoreline.
There are some precautions you need to take to make sure you and your family are safe. Be sure and secure all outdoor furniture and fixtures. Many people who have pools and don’t have much outdoor storage, like to put their lawn furniture into the pool. It won’t hurt anything and keeps the winds from blowing it away.
Be sure trash cans and children’s toys are secured and out of the wind.
Make sure your hurricane kit is stocked and ready. It should include a three-day supply of water and canned, non-perishable foods. Be sure to have a hand operated can opener.
It’s a good idea to have at least a three-day supply of any prescription medications, formula ands diapers for small children, a first aid kit, flashlight, battery operated radio and plenty of spare batteries.
It’s also a good idea to have a supply of wet-wipes, hand washing gels, bleach and other sanitary supplies.
Bay County’s Emergency Management Director Bob Majka says it’s important to be prepared but not to get worried. Frances will most likely not bring her high winds with her when she comes to the Panhandle.