Valley officials prepare for a busy hurricane season

Meteorologist Berry Goldsmith with the National Weather Service in Brownsville says it's key to be prepared.

It only takes one storm to make for a memorable season and one storm to make for a miserable time if your not prepared for it, " he said.

Being prepared is something that Valley Baptist medical center in Harlingen has learned over the years.

They suffered severe damage during Hurricane Dolly.

That TMs why this year they getting a head start at the 2011 Hurricane Preparation Conference.

On Thursday, the National Hurricane Center released the 2011 Atlantic hurricane season predictions.

Forecasters are predicting an above-average hurricane season with 12-18 named storms.

Including six to 10 hurricanes, three to six of which are expected to be major hurricanes.

For residents in the Rio Grand Valley there are measures they can take.

"Hope for the best, prepare for the worst, don TMt be scare be prepared, do all that stuff now in May into June so that if indeed a warning is issued, you'll be ready to rock and roll," Goldsmith said.

He said the best way to prepare for a hurricane is to experience one.

According to Goldsmith, it's better to start now.

The longer you get away from a storm in years, the more amnesia sets in and you start to think it can TMt hit us," he said.

Goldsmith said even though Hurricane Alex went into Mexico, because dolly was so fresh, more people were prepared.

If a tropical storm or hurricane were to hit the region this season, Valley Baptist Medical Center said they will be prepared.

They are one of the only hospitals in the Valley to still use ham radios.

Hospital officiald said it gives them an advantage back up system to provide safety for their patients.