How to Prepare

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The following in an excerpt from an interview with Homeland Security expert Dave McIntyre regarding Hurricane Rita, and how Brazos Valley families should prepare.

Joe Brown: Tell us what's the minimum folks need to have on hand.

Dave McIntyre: The idea here is to have a survival kit. Not a hurricane party. But just enough to stay alive and take care of yourself for three days until the lights come back on.

Start with your medicines and medications. You've got to have your prescription.

Secondly, a list of names and numbers of who to call -- a cell phone or a way to communicate with your family.

Thirdly, water especially in the hot weather. Have a gallon per day per person. Half of that to drink, half to wash. A first aid kit for simple minor injuries you might have.

Also, items for cleanliness. Its very important to keep your hands washed so you don't get sick. Simple tools for around the house incase you have damages before friends can come over to help you take care of them.

When the lights go out you need lights so keep a flashlight on hand with batteries in case the batteries run out and also a radio so you can keep in touch with what's going on around you. A car radio will do but it also helps to have a radio with batteries.

Keep cash on hand. Not enough to make you voluble but enough to purchase items if need be. And also of course keep food. Non-perishable items. Things in cans. Enough for light meals for three days. Keep your important documents with you. The deeds to your house, any insurance policies any thing you think you need including identification. And of course keep your car ready. Keep a can of gas on hand and a map so you know where your going.

And be ready to pick it all up, put it in one container, and set it in the truck of your car in a matter of a few minutes.