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Governor urges residents to prepare now for potential impact of storm

(JACKSON, Mississippi)—Today Governor Haley Barbour issued a State of
for the State of Mississippi due to the threat posed by
Hurricane Gustav, which has demonstrated potential to severely impact
the entire state according to current predictions by the National
Weather Service
and National Hurricane Center.

“I urge all Mississippians to please take this storm seriously.  One
of the most important lessons we learned after Hurricane Katrina was
that there is no substitute for awareness and self-help, especially in
the days before a hurricane is predicted to hit,” Governor Barbour
said.  “Now is the time to prepare yourself, your family and your

Residents should take preparation steps by developing a family
communications and evacuation plan and ensuring that key items like
bottled water, canned food, and flashlights are readily available, the
Governor said.

Below is the full text of Governor Barbour’s State of Emergency:

WHEREAS, the current predictions of the National Weather Service and
National Hurricane Center demonstrate the potential for the entire State
of Mississippi to be severely impacted by Hurricane Gustav, beginning on
August 31, 2008, which may include sheltering of evacuees from other
states, hurricane and tropical storm force winds, severe thunderstorms,
flooding, and possible tornadoes; and

WHEREAS, this storm system is expected to cause personal injuries,
damage to homes, businesses, public property, and threaten the safety of
the citizens and property throughout the State of Mississippi; and

WHEREAS, in consideration of the health and safety of the residents and
the protection of their property within the affected areas, and in the
public interest, all steps should be taken to protect people and

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Haley Barbour, Governor of the State of Mississippi,
pursuant to the authority vested in me under the Constitution of the
State of Mississippi and Sections 33-15-11(b)(17) and (18), Mississippi
Code of 1972, as amended, and in the public interest and for the general
welfare, do hereby proclaim a State of Emergency to exist in the areas
of the State of Mississippi impacted by this tropical severe weather
; and, do hereby designate all areas south of the I-20 East/West
corridor and located in the State of Mississippi as the emergency impact
area as defined and contemplated by Sections 33-15-1 through 33-15-49,
Mississippi Code of 1972, as amended.  The provisions of this
proclamation shall exist and remain in effect until such time as this
threat to public safety shall cease to exist as prescribed in Sections
33-15-11(b)(17) and (18), Mississippi Code of 1972, as amended.

FURTHER, all agencies of the State of Mississippi shall discharge their
emergency responsibilities as deemed necessary and as set forth in the
State of Mississippi Emergency Operations Plan and Executive Order No.
653, dated November 16, 1990.

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