2018 Hurricane Expo – Edward McCrane, Jr.

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American Today News

By show of hands how many of new to Florida alright so what were you here how many of you were not here during Emma ok good so you probably watched it with a lot of interest last year because you saw that you were moving here and you wanted to know what that was all about so I’m glad you’re here today thank you for coming to the Expo and I gotta tell you it’s not the people like you that I worry about so much it’s the people that don’t come to these the people that are not prepared so thank you for preparing thank you for being here today my name is Emma crane I’m the emergency management director for Sarasota County I’ve been here since 2005 prior to that I work for the state of emergency response team in Tallahassee so I went to Charlie Francis Ivan jean-denis Rita Katrina so I know a little bit about hurricanes and I have a great team of folks that work with me every day and we have a great partnership in this community the big thing about emergency man has been his relationship so I can tell you we have a great relationship with the city of Venice and Sarasota and Longboat and North Port and all of our police and fire agencies and that’s who got everything done for Emma and that’s we’ll be there for you after a storm it’s not just hurricanes right we deal with everything that could happen but we’re going to talk about hurricanes today cuz I want you to be prepared if we have an unfortunate storm again this year hurricane season starts June 1st right can we have a storm in May yeah there’s one right out there now right if you’ve been watching there’s one out in the in the Bahamas area that’s just a little disturbance it’s not calm it’s probably not going to become a tropical storm or depression but it’s going to bring some bad weather to Florida probably late Saturday Sunday Bob probably talked about that so watch ABC 7 watch Bob Harrigan he’ll tell you what’s going on on the news and as far as the weather goes you picked a good area to live we’re all been a long time since we’ve been hit by a major hurricane here right and Irma let’s face it folks we got lucky if the worst-case scenario would have happened we would have been in trouble we have had storms come here in nineteen in the 1940s there were a lot of hurricanes here 1960 we had Charlie in 2004 which just a few miles south of us in the Charlotte County right that could have been here so it can’t happen we have to be ready Irma was a unique storm because it encompassed the entire Florida peninsula even when it was in the tropics and it the cone of uncertainty came up into us it covered the whole state the entire time so we had to be ready for the worst Bob probably talked about these we were in a weak La Nina last year we’re sort of in a neutral phase now so we probably won’t see as many but we’re still going to have an above average hurricane season okay my job and the job of my my team and all of our partners is to keep you safe so we have to call for evacuations when we have a major hurricane that’s gonna threaten us why do we evacuate we evacuate because of storm tide we live very close to the Gulf of Mexico and believe it or not that storm surge can come all the way to i-75 in some areas if we get a major storm people that live right on the beach they have a beautiful home they love living on the beach but if we have a storm surge that home could be gone so newer homes that are built or built differently they might still be there but that storm surge there’s a lot of devastation these are the evacuation zones which we are changing that term this year to evacuation levels we learn that people got confused last year about evacuation zone versus level flood zone versus evacuation zone so you have a flood zone which is freshwater rainfall and River flooding and then you have an evacuation level the other reason we’re changing it to level is because a lot of people who lived in mobile homes knew we were only evacuating zone A and their mobile home was in zone C they thought they were okay but all mobile homes have to evacuate for hurricane so levels will change that we will say we’re evacuating level A which includes all mobile homes all boat dwellers all RVs all areas west of 41 in these areas will use streets will use geographies and will give you a better idea of what that area is so you understand don’t wait till the last minute I know you can sit there in your home watching Bob Harrigan hour-by-hour and deciding whether you want to go I can’t do that we have to make the decision at least 30 hours out for a category one and more than that depending on the category of storm in the amount of storm surge storm surge can come in early it can surprise you then the roads are flooded and you can’t get out and we have to come rescue you so please don’t do that storm surge destroys bridges even the bridges that come onto the island can be damaged or destroyed well they they have to be checked before we can come over them so you don’t want to be stuck in an isolated area this man here I call this the luckiest man in Texas but this was Hurricane Ike in 2008 there were four houses on both sides of the road all the way down and they lost a hundred feet of y’all a hundred feet of beach that’s the only house if you look on Google Earth it’s still the only house there because nobody else rebuild because they only had a category two hurricane Ike which created a 25 foot storm surge okay storm surge brings everything from the ocean into your yard and it takes your house apart if you’re close so please if you live on the beach if you live close to the water evacuate okay we have the same kind of geography as they did up there in Mississippi and Louisiana the other reason we evacuate is hurricane force wind very destructive on weaker structures mobile homes RV’s buildings that are not built to the wind you know the wind level that that storm is designed 30,000 roofs were destroyed in Hurricane Charley if you live in a newer home you have impact or shudders you’re not in an evacuation level you can stay home if you have your supplies and you’re safe you’re better off there than on the road or at an evacuation center okay but protect your home protect your business the reason some of these storms are so destructive is because they contain tornadoes in the outer vams all right even if the storm is way out there like Dennis in 2005 and those outer bands go by the coast like a buzzsaw they create hundreds of tornadoes you’re gonna get a warning you can watch the news you can act we have the emergency alert system you have the local media you have your car radio you have a cell phone a smart phone and we have Code Red so if you’re not registered for Code Red either within your city or county wide please do that I’ll talk about that in a minute the Co is a tool that we use to determine where that storm might go but you’ll notice four days out it could be 290 miles in the left or right of the projected path 24 hours out you’re about a hundred miles so it’s not exactly where it’s gonna go but that’s the area that’s gonna be impacted okay watches and warnings you’re gonna get awhile a hurricane watch if we’re 48 hours out you’re gonna get a hurricane warning when we’re 36 hours out if you get these you know that we are we are ground zero we are going to get this hurricane so one part of it so be ready get all your plans done before the arrival of tropical storm force winds when the winds reach sustained 45 miles an hour constant 45 mile an hour wind with higher gusts we take all emergency vehicles off the road if you call 9-1-1 I hate to tell you this but nobody’s coming that’s why you have to be in a safe location we cannot send out these vehicles in those winds they will not go out again until the winds subside below 45 we had 390 I’m sorry 320 911 calls between the time we stopped responding and the time we began responding again we put a medical director and we had paramedics telling people how to do CPR how to stop bleeding how to help somebody with whatever issue they have as much as we could but you have to be in a safe location with other people not at home in an area we can’t get to you need to be prepared okay the first 72 are on you we have a lot of work to do we will provide as much service as we can to the community but you have to do your part you have to be ready you have to have food and water I need to do it now don’t wait until the hurricane has already been announced you go to Publix and all the water is gone okay I know a gentleman that ordered it on Amazon and it showed up on his doorstep the next day so that’s the way you want to do it that’s great but get your supplies now have batteries have a flashlight so when the power goes out you can see around ok even if you guys even if you go to a shelter now the things you need to do to be prepared or get a kit so put that disaster kit together make a plan and then get prepared ok stay informed you’re being informed today about the preparation you’re gonna watch Bob Harrigan or the other news channels in the local area to find out what’s happening in our area stay informal because things change ok they get their information from us and the national weather service so they have the best information we do press releases you might have seen me on TV a couple of times each day doing a press conference we’re also going to do cut ins now we’re gonna do 2 to 3 minute cut ends when something changes or there’s something you need to know disaster planning guide is a great tool it will be out in May May 25th the reason it’s not out now is because we made a lot of changes in our procedures because we learned a lot from you during Hurricane Irma we learned how you respond to us and what you how you want to get information so in doing that we’re going to get that information in that guide the guide tells you 10 ways to prepare now so you can’t see that from the receipt but when you get the guide or when you go online the SC gov dot that you’ll be able to see this information create a disaster plan know what it is know what you’re going to do think about it now don’t wait till the storm is here talk to your talk to your kids what are we going to do where are we going to go you live in some of the most beautiful areas of the other country right so people from all over your family come here to visit you right so they can go to the beach you return the favor when a hurricane is coming go visit them okay leave early if you can if you retire you have the funds go visit them go make friends in areas away from the coast that you can go stay at check into hotels if they’re in the safe area and buy a last resort if you have to your plan should be to go to one of our evacuation centers and if you can’t get there by yourself I’m going to show you how to do that so the disaster supplies get those kids together pack your own bag have every family member have their old go bag with their clothes and their hygiene items and their snacks and their glasses and all the things that they like extra batteries extra cell phone charger take that with you and then take your food in your water and other containers if you’re going to stay home and you’re saying you need to have certain things if you’re going to go to an evacuation center you need to bring your sleeping bag and your pillow and your blanket and your food and your water and your flashlights and all your stuff pretend you’re going camping for a couple of days okay brace to the hurricane prepare your home if you have shutters put them up and get the things out of your yard that’s going to become projectiles if you’re going to evacuate or stage your to mandatory evacuation or rather we’re not going to use the term mandatory anymore or voluntary we’re going to say these areas are being evacuated if you’re in an evacuation area please leave don’t take your chances write it and and write it out so where are you going to go if you can stay you can stay if you have the proper plans in place so look at this and make that decision for yourself the hurricane evacuation centers are the places you can go as a last resort if you have no other place to go we have 11 of them that open all at once we used to open them for out of time and we learned last year did that confuse some people they didn’t hear that the new ones were open or they went to the first for that opened up and they were already full so we don’t want to confuse anybody so all 11 will open at once if we end up with the 50 in one we’ll close it down and move you to another one and close that one down or something but we’re going to open them all the school district for Sarasota County school district the administration and their faculty and staff were tremendous during our month they helped us tremendous we could have done it without them and they are on board and we’re going to make sure that these facilities are safe and ready for those that need it if you’re ready you can help your neighborhood if you know you have a neighbor that doesn’t drive anymore help them sign up for the transportation plan I’m going to talk about the minute if you have a neighbor that has a medical need have them sign up for the medical needs program that I’m going to talk about in a minute help out your neighbors okay medical needs program used to be called people with special needs but quite frankly we found out last year there’s a lot of people that thought they were special and they showed up at these medical shelters and they didn’t need to be there we need to reserve these three facilities that we have for people with medical needs people with oxygen people that need a nurse around not everybody else if you’re healthy enough to come here today you’re healthy enough to sit in a shelter a regular evacuation center please do that so we’re really waiting that but you can go to our medical needs program on saw on the website you can apply by clicking on that link and if you have a computer or you go to the library you can fill in the form right online very simple fill in the blank if you can’t you can print it out take it to your doctor had somebody to help you then you can mail it into the address right there so we have multiple ways to get you in the medical program I’ll tell you something when Emma came we had 1,600 people on our registry 800 people decided they needed to be on the program two days before the hurricane that put a lot of pressure on my team to try to get those people so please help us out if you need to be in that program sign up now okay keep your pets safe the only plan they have is your plan they can’t pack their own bag they can’t put their crate in the car they can’t get their medication ready so make sure you have a plan one thing we learned last year we have four pet friendly facilities they’re all pet friendly now because they all ended up pet friendly after Emma we’re not going to serve somebody away and the school district helped us make that decision they’re agreed to it some you may be with your pet some they may be in a laboratory room with the tile floor some they may be in a locker room so be it be flexible but bring your supplies if your pet needs its vaccinations please I know you bet some people hold off on that as long as they can go get them refreshed get that rabies certificate show us that your dog has had the vaccinations or your cat and dogs and cats please well I don’t any pythons in the evacuation center protect your home and your business talk to your insurance agent about your coverage what are you covered on what’s a hurricane deductible what can I claim what’s flood insurance do I need it if you live in Florida you need flood insurance okay trust me places that have flooded our places that people thought would never flood if you don’t need it because of your mortgage doesn’t require it it’s probably a lot cheaper you’ll get it a rate okay keep a paper trail keep all your important documents after the storm call eight six one five thousand check with your association manager call a friend find out if it’s safe to come back we’re gonna have a safety status red yellow or green about counting areas to let you know if it’s safe to come back to those areas or not if you use a generator please get a class on it learn how to use it properly don’t just plug it into the wall and turn it on and think that powers your house believe it or not people think that learn how to use this thing do not put it in your carport or your garage or next to a window or air-conditioning vent put it away from the house if you’re worried about it getting stolen put a big chain on it but please be careful because we don’t want to respond to your house for copper monoxide poisoning know years old is now know your level if you don’t know what level your home is in you can go to our website and you can look and where is your home or business in that big massive storm surge right so go to SC gov net wwws ego net you do it on your smartphone you can do it online and at the top there you’re gonna see government emergency services emergency management and you know your level okay so once you get to know your level tool we’re gonna make it easier for you when the hurricane is coming all that information about Emergency Response and hurricanes gonna be on the front page you’ll be able to click little buttons but for now you kind of got a dig for it or put in the know your zone that’s got to change to know your love will remember that we haven’t made that adjustment yet but we will be put your address in that block it will pop up and tell you what level you’re in okay the other thing we’re doing is transportation plan this was a result of Hurricane Irma we discovered there were a lot of folks folks that don’t drive anymore don’t have a car or don’t feel comfortable dry more than five miles so we’re going to have a series of rally points around the county will identify where they are you go to our website and see them on the transportation plan and if you can’t get to the rally point we’re gonna be able to pick you up at home and bring you to a rally point but you got to register so first step drive to the evacuation center if that’s your plan second step drive to the rally point and get on the bus with all your supplies and your pet third if you can’t you register by going to that site okay so that you can register for the transportation plan you go to government emergency services emergency management and then the transportation plan okay when you get there you’ll see the link you’ll see all the information and at the bottom of that ill there’s maps to the different rally points this is a rally point right here the Venice Community Center you’ll be able to come here park your car get on the bus and go to the shelter okay the truth of the matter folks is we don’t have any shelters in Englewood or Venice because the elevation is too low we can’t put them in a B or C levels by regulation and we’re not going to put people in an area that could possibly be flooded and you drown not going to do that we’re going to put you in a safe building away from the coast someday there will be a school built in an area that’s not gonna flood or be hit by storm surge and we’ll put you there we’ll make that an evacuation center but until that happens we got a you got to get there on your own or we got to pick you up and take you in our transportation plan but we can do it okay when you get there you’ll see our emergency services Facebook page Bob talked about Facebook we also have a Facebook page you can sign up and like us and you’ll get a lot of information there we also use Twitter and last thing I’ll talk about is code for the county you go to our SC gov net at the bottom you’ll see like a little pulse beat circle you want to click on that you want to fill out that information on code red so that we can notify you if there’s an evacuation or you have a boil water notice from broken water main okay the Senators old account Emergency Operations Center is off cattlemen Road it’s built to 250 miles an hour and last year we had 400 people in there operating to serve you and we will do that again if another storm comes I hope no one no more storms come for at least 10 20 years but if we get one this year we’ll be ready and I want you to be ready you

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