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Fill your gas tanks now

August 28, 2008

Commissioner of Agriculture and Forestry Mike Strain encouraged Louisiana motorists to fill up their gas tanks before any mandatory evacuation in response to Hurricane Gustav is ordered.
            “Most folks in flood zones already know they will have to evacuate if they are threatened by Hurricane Gustav. It’s just a good idea to have your car tanked up before you have to go,” Strain said. “Residents who live in areas beyond the evacuation areas should also get your cars and trucks gassed up and keep them topped off.”
            “We don’t know exactly where Gustav is going to hit at this point,” Strain said. “But if we fill our tanks now, while Gustav is out in the Gulf of Mexico, it will give merchants a chance to re-supply their stores before it hits and alleviate possible fuel shortages.
“We don’t want any gas shortages so we’re asking our citizens to prepare now.” 
Strain added it’s not too late to develop an evacuation plan if you do not already have one. He urged residents to:
— Determine escape routes from your home and places to meet. These should be measured in tens of miles rather than hundreds of miles.
— Have an out-of-state friend as a family contact, so all your family members have a single point of contact.
— Make a plan now for what to do with your pets if you need to evacuate.
      — Make sure pets have proper identification. Preferably something permanent like a microchip but pet owners should also have an identifying collar with tags for their pet…take digital or film pictures of any identifying marks on the pet in order to prove ownership.
      — Take health records, 3-day food and water supply, pet carriers, leashes, harnesses, muzzles and medications.
— Post emergency telephone numbers by your phones and make sure your children know how and when to call 911.
— Check your insurance coverage – flood damage is not usually covered by homeowners insurance. Bring all insurance documents and other important family documents if you have to evacuate.