NACOGDOCHES, Texas (KETK) – Last year there were 21 named tropical storms, and weather experts expect this season to be just as busy. That’s why the Community Hurricane Emergency Response Team held a meeting in Nacogdoches on Wednesday to make sure East Texans stay ahead of the storms.
“This is the seventh straight season we’ve had hurricane form prior to June 1, which is the start of hurricane season and this is the sixth straight season we’ve been above normal for hurricanes,” said Brandon Throne, meteorologist.
With hurricanes forming earlier, the National Weather Services is considering moving the season start date to May.
“Four of those hurricanes became major hurricanes, the average of which is about three. So we were a little above normal on hurricanes last year and that’s kind of what we expect. for this year as well,” Thorne said.
East Texas tends to experience flooding or tornadoes from hurricanes, but the aftermath of the storm can be worse than the actual impact.
“Over the past four years, we’ve actually seen more deaths from carbon monoxide and heat poisoning after the storm than we’ve had from the impacts of the storm itself,” said Thorne.
It is always best to prepare early. Prepare a carry bag, know where you need to take refuge and who to contact next.
“You want to make sure you know your risk, because after finding out what those risks are to your home, the next thing you’ll want to do is make a plan. You want to do some kind of family emergency plan because chances are in the moment the same as with a tornado,” Thorne said. “If there’s a tornado coming our way and we’re trying to prepare, we’re most likely going to make the wrong call.”
When a hurricane hits, it can be a scary and confusing time. This is where the Emergency Response Team comes in. She is there to provide information on where you can get water, blankets and other essentials.
“What we’re hoping to do at the radio station is just be able to give people clear instructions on where they can get help and who they can contact as well, and then help all those organizations get across the word,” said Michelle Ross, KSWP/President of KAVX.
The Emergency Response Team was launched in 2021 ahead of the hurricane season. KSWP and KAVX radio station in Lufkin formed the group to help communicate with the community about where they can get help after a disaster. Alleviate confusion and stress before and after the storm.
“I think it’s really important for the community to have a place where agencies can rely on getting information,” Ross said.
The Shreveport National Weather Service recommends that you start paying attention to the forecast no more than five days before, that way you can have a plan to protect your family in the event of a disaster.
To stay up to date on hurricane season in East Texas, visit KETK’s Tracking the Tropics page.