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Thursday
Sep062007

Troxler Urges Storm Preparation

Weather forecasters are watching an area of disturbed weather off Bermuda, with a slight concern it could become a tropical storm. Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler today advised farmers, particularly in the eastern part of the state, to take steps to guard against damage from the system.

“At this point, we don’t know for certain if this weather system will affect North Carolina, but there are general emergency preparations every farmer can take to protect their farms and families from damaging weather,” Troxler said. “Now is the time to review emergency plans with your family and workers, and make sure your equipment and animals are secure.”

It isn’t clear whether the low-pressure system will organize into a tropical storm. Meteorologists say that if the system becomes more organized, it could affect North Carolina by late Saturday or early Sunday.

Farmers have been busy trying to harvest what they can from their fields, but they also need to make preparations for their families, equipment and buildings, and have backup plans for electricity for their curing barns and other critical farm facilities, Troxler said. In addition, livestock operations should begin implementing their specific emergency plans, securing backup generators and assessing their on-site feed capabilities.

Troxler reminded farmers that they should have a transfer switch properly installed so they can use a generator. A properly installed transfer switch is critical for the protection of farm facilities and utility workers, he said.

Farmers are also encouraged to add the phone number of their county emergency management office to their list of important numbers. If necessary, county emergency management offices will be coordinating emergency crop and livestock assistance, including requests for generators.

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