Neighbors in rural Hinds County prepare for Laura

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HINDS COUNTY, Miss. (WJTV) — “Better to have and not need rather than need and not have.” Michael Washington is not taking any chances while he prepares for the tail end of Hurricane Laura.

“I went and gassed up,” Washington said. “[I] stopped by Kroger to pick up sandwich meat to prepare. You never know how it might end with the storm. Hopefully everything will be OK.”

Going the extra mile, Chuck Mitchell from Edwards took action years ago when he first moved into his home 13 years ago, knowing that his neighborhood is prone to severe weather damage.

He said he built a shelter that can hold six people comfortably. He says it has not failed him yet.

“I have 100% confidenence in it,” Mitchell said. “It was overkill when we built it. If the whole house leaves, it will be standing there.”

The Hinds County EOC shelter in Clinton will be open to the public, but it will look a little different that usual. Director Ricky Moore explains the measures they are taking within the shelter.

“We have to make sure that masks are available and that they do social distancing,” Moore said. “Of course, anytime in the pandemic– it’s new to all of us– when it comes to sheltering, I have to make sure that everyone adheres to the sheltering guidelines.”

Moore reminded us that storm kits are a must if you live in a high risk area.

Moore also reminded us of the phrase that pays while driving after a storm: “turn around don’t drown!”

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