National Weather Service Hosts Hurricane Drill in Marianna

By  | 

Marianna- Category 3 hurricane Kimberly was heading straight for us... at least it was, Wednesday morning during the National Weather Service's hurricane preparedness drill.

More than 80 first responders spent the day at the Agriculture Center in Marianna taking part in the annual exercise.

"We try to develop a storm that's realistic" explained organizer and National Weather Service Meteorologist, Kelly Godsey, "something that matches with a storm in the past, and present that in a realistic, authentic way with all the products we would normally provide. The we let them step-by-step go through and make various decisions they would have to make in a real event."

Directors and first responders from the local, state and federal level met to shake hands and make plans.

"If you have a disaster, the time to get to know somebody is not after the disaster or during, it's well before hand" said Meteorologist Jane Hollingsworth with the National Weather Service in Tallahassee.

"Disasters don't stop at the state line" Godsey added.

"If I can't communicate, I can't coordinate and that's the whole key. So we want to make sure we all get together, we know each other, work together. Because when we make decisions here, that impacts all those other individuals as well" Jackson County Emergency Management Director, Rodney Andreasen said.

Hurricane season is June 1- November 30, but can start before or end after. Forecasters are calling for an active season so this year there may be a lot of communication and coordination.

"The forecast right now is for an above normal season, so that tells us we're going to have a lot of storms this year. But what it doesn't tell us is where those storms are going to go" Godsey told us.

"They're looking at this pattern to possibly be like 2004" Andreasen said. "2004 is when Ivan hit us. We forget. We have an incident, 10 years passes, 'oh well it's not going to happen here.' I hear that so many times. We can't count on that. We have to be prepared. We have to be ready all the time. All a hurricane has to do is hit us one time".

Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station. powered by Disqus