(WFXR) — The peak of 2021 hurricane season is underway (mid-August through late October) and the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) wants Virginian farmers to prepare.
VDACS has some tips to help farmers protect their families, livestock, and farm operations.
- Monitor local weather reports
- Create an emergency kit with flashlights, batteries, drinking water and food for humans and pets, medications, emergency numbers, first aid kit, and dust masks
- Identify evacuation routes and meeting destinations for your family
- Charge cell phones and take extra batteries for radios
- Secure livestock and other animals
- Stock up on feed, water and livestock supplies
- Mark animals with an identifier
- Store and secure items or equipment that may blow away or become projectiles
- Inspect all barns, outbuildings, and other structures that might need to be repaired
- Nail doors and windows shut
- Have plenty of fuel for generators, electrical equipment, milking machines, water pumps, and vent fans
- Store fertilizers, pesticides, and treated seeds away from floodwaters and animals
- Do not drive across flooded roadways
- Coordinate with neighbors in the event of power outages or flooding
- Have contact information for local emergency manager, sheriff and animal control office
“I encourage all agricultural producers to prepare their farms and agribusinesses now for hurricanes and other severe weather events. Proper planning and taking precautions before a storm arrives could save thousands of dollars in property loss,” said Brad Copenhaver, Commissioner of VDACS.
VDACS also offers helpful information for those who own horses:
- Have multiple forms of identification for your horse
- Store the record for the microchip number in an accessible location
- Make sure your horse’s vaccinations for tetanus and the encephalitis viruses are up to date
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