The time is now for hurricane prep

Published 12:08 am Saturday, June 3, 2023

The 2023 Atlantic Hurricane Season officially began June 1 and ends Nov. 30. The Mississippi Department of Transportation reminds residents, businesses and community organizations across South Mississippi to have a preparedness plan in place before a storm threatens the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

“The 2022 hurricane season was a rare and welcome respite from our usual active storm seasons, but we may not be so fortunate in 2023,” said Commissioner Tom King, Southern Transportation District. “No matter what the season has in store, now is a great time to make your plan, and MDOT can help you get started with free hurricane resources.”

The 2023 MDOT Hurricane Evacuation Guide is an essential resource during hurricane season. The Guide features evacuation routes, contraflow information, radio coverage areas through Mississippi Public Broadcasting and important contact information for the Mississippi Highway Patrol, American Red Cross, Mississippi Emergency Management Agency and bordering state DOTs and highway patrols. Vital information on shelters, pet care, lodging and travel resources is also included.

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One can download the guide at or order free printed copies at Guides are available in English, Spanish and Vietnamese. Also available are children’s hurricane activity books, state maps and more.

If a hurricane forces an evacuation along the Mississippi Gulf Coast, it’s important for residents to have a plan in place. Evacuation routes will likely see a sudden increase in traffic volume. Motorists should allow ample time to get to their destination safely.

Prep tips

During Hurricane Season, citizens should keep at least 72 hours of food and water. A go-kit should include the following:

  • Flashlight and battery-powered radio with additional batteries.
  • Canned and non-perishable food.
  • Bottled water.
  • Toiletry items.
  • Pet food and pet supplies.
  • Medicine and prescription medication.
  • Copies of important family papers and documents.
  • Personal protective equipment

When families are making their hurricane plan, there are some important considerations such as:

  • If an evacuation order is put in place, where will you go?
  • Who outside of your immediate family knows your plan?
  • If you have access and functional needs, how will you evacuate, and who is needed to help you?
  • Do you have medications that must stay cool? How will you keep them cool during a power outage?
  • Do you have medical supplies that require electricity? If so, what’s your plan in case of a prolonged power outage?

During the storm, the public can stay updated on live travel and weather information 24/7 with MDOT’s free travel resources. Visit or download the MDOT Traffic mobile app.  For more hurricane safety tips, visit