Reeves holds news conference about hurricane season

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Published: Jun. 5, 2020 at 10:33 AM CDT
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Gov. Tate Reeves and MEMA Executive Director Greg Michel were in Gulfport Friday talking about the 2020 hurricane season, and the expected impact of Tropical Depression Cristobal.

Reeves acknowledged that coronavirus brings new challenges to hurricane season, especially storm shelter operations.

“Avoid going to shelters if you don’t have to,” Reeves said. “If you have family 30-40 miles north, go see them. We want our shelters to be the last resort for Mississippians, but we will have them open if it becomes necessary.”

Reeves said masks have been delivered to county governments, and they’re encouraged by the plans local emergency managers are already making.

“The biggest challenge is the unknown. Every single day brings a new challenge that we should have thought of already,” Reeves said. “To give an example, two weeks ago today we never imagined we would be utilizing state’s supply of masks to hand out at protests. But we have to adapt and overcome, and that’s what emergency preparedness is all about.”

Cristobal began to move northward Friday morning, and has started to pick up speed. It’s expected to regain strength and become a tropical storm again by Saturday over the warmer Gulf water. We’re expecting landfall by Sunday night, just to the west of coastal Mississippi.

We’re less than a week into the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season, and Cristobal is already the third named storm of the season. Experts are predicting an active season with NOAA calling for 13-19 named storms, with six of those being hurricanes.

The Atlantic hurricane season continues through November 30th.

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