One thing the Southern Tier learned from the last flood is how important it is to be prepared.  The more prepared you are the better..Here are some tips to prepare.1. Stock up on non-perishables, water and very importantly medicine. Get your pills refilled.

2. Pack and evacuation bag for each member of your household, now. Especially if your home is in a flood prone area.

3. Read the Fema guidelines for stocking up and packing. There is other valuable preparation material to read here as well. FEMA

4. Gas up your car, fill your propane tanks, Have flashlights and emergency lighting ready with fresh batteries and in place.

5. Put away any items outside that could blow away. Chairs, wheelbarrows, decorations, trash cans. If you can’t store it, tie it down.

6. Make sure you have supplies for your animals and an evacuation bag as well. Your pets need to be indoors during the storm. In the event of evacuation, take them with you or have someone else keep them for you.

7. Place all important items on upper floors or put them above flood height if you previously got flooded out. I use rubbermaid plastic totes for this. You can also seal items like photo albums in watertight totes.

8. HEED ALL EVACUATION ORDERS. Many people tend not to do this right away. This is the difference between safety and putting your family and major risk. We know the event will start in the early hours of Monday, so pay attention to the news or 99.1 The Whale and our website and facebook pages.

9. Keep an eye on the forecast conditions. If you feel your family is at risk, but no evacuations have been ordered, leave.

10. Get with friends and family to make a plan in case someone may need assistance. If you are on higher ground, open your door to someone who needs a place to stay.

11. Go over this plan with every member of your family, including the children. They will not be scared if they know Mom and Dad are prepared. This key to successfully riding out the storm.

12. Have your cell phone and other portable electronic devices charged, so if the power goes out, you can still get information. Have a battery operated radio handy.

These are the basic guidelines. There may be other preparations to be made if there are special needs, etc. involved.

We will have all the information you need as it comes in. As with last year’s flood, we’ve got your back as far as information.

Be safe and if you have any questions, please post them here and we will get you the answers.