RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC)– It has been a relatively quiet hurricane season since it started on June 1, but Richmond leaders say that will soon come to an end.
Representatives from the Emergency Management Department and other city agencies are warning people to prepare for a busy hurricane season as Saturday, Sept. 10 marks the peak of the season.
The agency spoke at a briefing Thursday afternoon.
Stephen Willoughby, the emergency management coordinator and director of the Richmond Department of Communications, said all of the city’s agencies have been preparing for the most active time of the hurricane season.
City council members recently adopted an updated emergency operations plan detailing each agency’s responsibility in case of an emergency, he said.
The Virginia Emergency Operations Center also updated its equipment, Willoughby added.
The peak of hurricane season is September 10 through mid-October.
“Trees knocking down power lines, that’s a big concern here,” Stormtracker 8News Meteorologist Matt DiNardo said.
“If a storm were to come directly inland, let’s say from Virginia Beach almost up the James River, that would cause a tremendous amount of tidal flooding and of course, you have the rainfall causing flooding. That would be a big deal here.”
DiNardo said this hurricane season was off to a slow start, but now the team is tracking two storms in the Atlantic.
“One is Earl, which is out in the central Atlantic, but it may give influence of some tidal flooding across the northern neck, middle peninsula and even the lower peninsula through early Saturday morning,” he said.
DiNardo added that there’s no imminent threat to Central Virginia, but a storm could change its path at any moment.
Anthony McLean, the chief deputy coordinator of emergency management, urged families to make a plan, check their insurance and build a supply kit.
“Regardless of how many number of storms they name, it just takes one to disrupt your daily lives,” he said.
In that emergency kit, McLean said to pack at least a three-day supply of water and food, a week’s worth of medicine, batteries, flashlights, and blankets.
He said to keep cash handy and advised not to rely on credit or debit cards, in case the power goes out.
Flood insurance is also something families don’t think about too often, which isn’t typically covered under homeowner’s insurance, McLean added.
For more information on preparedness, click here.
Hurricane season lasts through November 30th.