Angelina County emergency officials prepare for hurricane season

ANGELINA COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - Hurricane season has begun, and emergency officials are making sure everyone is ready if a disaster occurs.

The peak for hurricane season is August and September, so now is a great time to prepare. East Texas News learned about Lufkin's emergency action plan.

A category four hurricane was the last to make its way through East Texas in 2008.

For the past few years, Angelina County has been fortunate that hurricanes have made landfall elsewhere.

"Whenever a hurricane is detected in the gulf the state emergency operation center monitors it and sees where it's going to go or guess where it's going to go to track where they predict it's going to go," said Don Morris, Angelina County's emergency management coordinator.

Weather agencies are predicting a very active hurricane season this year. While no storms are currently forming and moving through the gulf coast, emergency officials say this is the best time to prepare.

"The public needs to remember that preparedness is the most important thing. Now is the time to go to your grocery store, go to your hardware store," said Sharon Shaw, the administrator of the Angelina County and Cities Health District. "We have an emergency preparedness guide that we leave at Brookshire Brothers."

It's a guide that includes everything needed if a tropical storm or hurricane comes.

"What food, what water, what medications, what you need for your pets, what you need for children," Shaw said.

Hurricane Ike was the last to make landfall in East Texas but it wasn't the last one to affect Angelina County, a hub for evacuees.

"We had evacuees that came out of Beaumont and Houston," Morris said. The City of Lufkin and Red Cross handled about 9,000 evacuees."

The Red Cross also partners with hospitals, the county, the city, and health clinics to prepare the public and help with necessities.

Hurricane season began June first and lasts until November 30th. While there's no predicting where storms will go this year, there's no better time to prepare for hurricane season now.

Copyright 2013 KTRE. All rights reserved.