Hurricane season begins - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Hurricane season begins

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC/RNN) -  Hurricane season starts Wednesday.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA) predicted an "above normal" Atlantic hurricane season for 2011.

"It will likely include 12 to 18 named storms, with winds of 39 MPH or greater," said Jane Lubchenco, under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA administrator.

Of those storms, six to 10 could become hurricanes, with winds of at least 74 MPH.

Of those storms, three to six could become major hurricanes, rated categories three to five, with winds 111 MPH or greater.

The South Carolina Emergency Management Division's 2011 South Carolina Hurricane guide will be released.

The guide includes important information that people can use before, during and after hurricane threats. Preparation information includes lists of suggested safety items, evacuation routes and shelter locations.

Gov. Nikki Haley has proclaimed this week Hurricane Awareness Week in South Carolina.

Beaufort County Emergency Management is planning for the coming months. They've added six new traffic cameras to evacuation routes, bringing the total to 80 cameras. Now, they'll be able to watch the routes to keep traffic flowing.

But the public needs to prepare as well.

"They need to make sure they have a good inventory of their house, make sure all of their insurance is up to date and it will cover the expenditures. They think it will cover and if you're not sure, call your insurance company and have them come out and take a look," said Todd Ferguson, emergency management director.

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