Monday, 07 May 2007 01:00
ResponseWritten by WGCU Newsroom
State officials are gearing up for the 2007 Hurricane season with a week long exercise that kicks of Monday. The annual event will test the Florida State Emergency Response Team, or SERT’s, ability to handle any scenario Mother Nature may create.
When the exercise begins no one from SERT will know what to expect. All they know is that a fictional storm will come through Florida, testing the response capabilities of state and local agencies. The Florida Division of Emergency Management’s Mike Stone says there will be scenarios, including videos that will create a feel of real world events. He adds that anything can happen during the exercise.
“It won’t be uncommon for us to have, actually, two storms or other events thrown into the equation…actually most of us are waiting to see what will be thrown at us this year.”
Stone says with the current wildfire state of emergency all the teams will already be assembled. This year’s fictional storm – named for the exercise will be Hurricane Tolbert. The exercise runs through May 11th.
Hurricane season begins June first and state officials are asking everyone to create a plan. Florida Division of Emergency Management officials are preparing for this year’s hurricane season with a week long hurricane exercise. Starting Monday through Thursday next week, the Florida State Emergency Response Team or SERT will run drills during a fictional hurricane scenario. Florida emergency management representative Mike Stone says just as the state is preparing, so should residents.
“Now is a good time to simply get a plan…and you can build a personalized family or business disaster plan and then be prepared to take advantage of the sales tax holiday on hurricane items that begins on June first.”
This is the second year the legislature passed a tax holiday on hurricane supplies. The hurricane exercise is an annual event that tests the response capabilities of all state and local agencies. Stone adds, to get that disaster plan ready, visit www.floridadisaster.org.