Coast residents keep an eye on the Gulf

D'IBERVILLE, MS (WLOX) - With Katia lurking in the Atlantic, and a low pressure system in the central Gulf, there's no doubt we're at the height of hurricane season. That also means the awareness level goes up as well, as people pay close attention to the activity in the tropics.

Walk into Lowes, and you'll be greeted by stacks and stacks of bottled water. An entire aisle is devoted to hurricane supplies, from lanterns to flashlights to batteries. And plywood is stacked to the ceiling.

Assistant Store Manager Chris Smith knows that people are watching carefully, ready to act if needed.

"This time of year, they do pay more attention to it," Smith said. "So we're trying to keep items in stock that people can use for situations like that arise. We have generators, flashlights, batteries, water, etc..."

Most coast stores say while they have a good supply of hurricane preparedness items on hand such as generators and chainsaws, they are prepared to order many, many more and get them here quickly, if and when a storm does threaten the central Gulf Coast.

Some folks are already prepared for the worst.

"I have my own generator, and we have our own power supply," Madison Goss said. "Usually we just ride them out, if we can, if they are not that bad because we live out in the country."

Cleo Pearson learned something six years ago that he will never forget.

"I keep abreast even before something happens," Pearson said.  "Especially around July and that's when I start thinking about what happened six years ago with Katrina. And it taught me a lesson because it was my first time witnessing something like that."

Being prepared, even if a storm doesn't come, is always good advice.

"I always prepare with batteries, and canned goods, and stuff like that," Kinh Robertson said. "Sometimes I have to save some water for drinking or something like that."

Katia is the 11th named storm so far this hurricane season, which ends on November 30th.

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