Some say it’s luck, some say it’s God’s blessing that the Rio Grande Valley somehow manages to not get the worst parts of tropical storms.
Recently, RGV residents worried that Hurricane Grace would hit home. Grace, a Category 3 hurricane, made landfall in the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico on Aug. 19.
Kirk Caceres, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Brownsville, said it was not luck but it was actually due to high pressure across the northern gulf.
“This high pressure came to deflect the tropical storms and hurricanes from moving in that direction,” he said.
“For Grace, high pressure was across the entire Gulf from Texas to Florida.”
For Tropical Storm Ida, Caceres said it has moved north because high pressure has shifted and it’s across the Atlantic.
The NWS released an update on Friday stating that Hurricane Ida continues to strengthen as it moves northwestward and is expected to make landfall along the northern Gulf Coast Sunday evening as a major hurricane.
Caceres said even though we haven’t had a tropical storm hit us directly this year, residents should still take the necessary precautions because we are not even at the peak of the hurricane season.
“There is still a lot more season to go,” he said.
“Every area near along the coast can get a hurricane or tropical storm. … Just because we don’t have one today doesn’t mean we can’t get one next week or in the next several weeks.”
During a previous interview, Odee Leal, Emergency Management Director with The City of Brownsville, said she recommends having an emergency plan that includes all family members to be prepared during hurricane season.
“Having an emergency plan can save you and your loved one’s money, peace of mind and most importantly your life,” she said.
“Complete a plan and make sure that everyone in your household understands it by holding a family meeting.”
Leal advises the following:
>> Discuss where you will evacuate to if the need arises.
>> Notify your loved ones of your plan.
>> Know your emergency routes.
>> Ensure your assets are protected.
>> Make a plan to protect your vehicles.
>> Assess your home for vulnerable areas and secure it.
>> Make a plan for your pets.
>> Sign up for emergency alerts.
>> Have a disaster kit ready and make sure to include items that will keep you and your family safe in case of a mandatory evacuation.
>> Plan for household members with disabilities. If anyone in your home has special medical needs, or is vulnerable in an emergency make proper arrangements prior to a disaster by registering with 2-1-1.
>> Follow the latest CDC guidelines as you prepare.