If a Hurricane Watch is Called

ATLANTA, Sept. 3 (UPI) — U.S. health officials say people living in areas where hurricane watches are posted should plan and expect to evacuate, and never ignore evacuation orders.

Hurricane and tropical storm watches and warnings were posted Thursday evening for much of the Atlantic Coast from North Carolina to the Canadian Maritimes as Hurricane Earl churned along the coast.

The National Weather Service issues hurricane watches when there is a threat to coastal areas of hurricane conditions within 24-36 hours, a statement from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says.

If a hurricane watch is issued, the CDC says to:

– Fill the automobile’s gas tank.

– If no vehicle is available, make arrangements with friends or family for transportation outside of the area.

– Fill clean water containers — 5 gallons per person per day.

– Listen to radio or watch television for weather updates as well as disaster sirens and warning.

– Prepare an emergency kit for vehicles with food, flares and other emergency gear.

– Secure or store any items outside which may cause damage property in high winds, such as bicycles, grills, propane tanks.

– Cover windows and doors with wood or place large strips of adhesive tape on the windows to reduce the risk of breakage and flying glass.

– Put livestock and family pets in a safe area. Many emergency shelters cannot accept pets.

– Adjust the thermostat on refrigerators and freezers to the coolest possible temperature.

– If you evacuate, turn off the gas, electricity and water and disconnect appliances.

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