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Alabama declares state of emergency ahead of Nate

Gov. Ivey addresses the state about preparation for Tropical Storm Nate. (Source: WSFA 12 News) Gov. Ivey addresses the state about preparation for Tropical Storm Nate. (Source: WSFA 12 News)
MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) -

Gov. Kay Ivey declared a state of emergency for Alabama that went effect at 7 a.m. Friday ahead of Tropical Storm Nate.

"It is impossible for us to know how this storm will play out. However, I want to make it real clear. We are not taking this threat likely,” Ivey said Thursday.

[Read the latest weather information HERE]

Nate is expected to be a Category 1 hurricane when it makes landfall on the Gulf Coast.

Alabama Emergency Management Agency Director Brian Hastings discussed the impacts he's expecting.

“In Mobile and Baldwin county, there's going to be a surge and tide and flooding event in the low lying areas,” Hastings said. “In other places there may be flash floods that are localized for the rain event. But the majority of Alabama will see a wind event that if it continues as the forecasts say, it will result in some power outages because trees will fall on power lines.”

Ivey explained the reason for the state of emergency.

“I have signed the State of Emergency, because it frees up personnel and resources in case there is a need to respond to any storm related activity,” Ivey said. “State and local leaders are ready to respond if needed, but our people need to stay weather-aware and heed any directions given by local officials.”

Ivey has ordered the State of Emergency Operations Center in Clanton to activate to Level Three, allowing AEMA staff to monitor and prepare for the impact of Nate. The Department of Transportation, the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency, the Alabama Department of Public Health, the Alabama Department of Human Resources, the Alabama Forestry Commission and the Alabama National Guard are prepared to respond as well. 

“The time for residents to prepare is now. Please build or restock your emergency preparedness kit, have a plan to communicate with family members if you lose power, review your evacuation plan with your family, stock your vehicle with emergency supplies and have a method to receive the latest weather updates and emergency instructions,” Hastings said. “It is important for Alabama residents to understand the potential threat of this storm goes beyond the coastal counties.  Everyone needs to closely monitor this system as it moves across the state in the coming days.”

“Lives cannot be replaced,” added Hastings. “So as you make the choice to do a voluntary evacuation or leave the area you think is at risk to mitigate your exposure to that threat, you should take solace in you're protecting your family. You're doing what's right because it feels good to you on an individual level.”

At this time, the governor is not ordering a mandatory evacuation of the state's coast but voluntary evacuations are in effect for parts of Baldwin and Mobile counties.

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