AAA says four out of five Virginia families are not ready with a plan and supplies if a Hurricane were to hit.
"Just think through: what would you do if suddenly a storm hit, harder than expected, and you didn't have any plan of what all your family members were going to do?" said spokesperson Martha Meade.
Meade says in addition to being ill prepared, people often engage in irresponsible behavior during severe weather. Putting an emergency plan in place ahead of time could actually save you the headaches.
"If you have an emergency plan in place ahead of time, that says 'I won't drive through high water even if I can't get in touch with you, because my safety is more important,' that gives both of you a little bit of peace of mind going into it that safety comes first," said Meade.
Meade says you should discuss alternate forms of communication, in case cell phones can't be used. Have a pre-determined meeting point - maybe more than one.
Also, pack some emergency supplies now. The essentials may not be available if you wait until the last minute. Make sure to have enough supplies on hand to last each person at least three days.
Rick Denning, the assistant manager at Pleasant's Hardware in the Tuckahoe Shopping Center, says he believes it will get busy this weekend. He says the first things to fly off the shelves are: batteries, flashlights and lanterns.
"To be prepared means to have it when you need it. Once the storm hits, sometimes it's too late to get what you need, so you're really not prepared," he said.
You want to make sure to have copies of your important documents, and keep them in two places. Even if you don't use them, they'll be ready. Also put together batteries, flashlights, first aid kits, medications, chargers and water - things that don't expire quickly.
"Then you can get the food and things closer to the storm, but maybe not in the last 24 hours when everybody else is out in Richmond, Virginia doing the exact same thing," said Meade.
Dominion Energy crews are prepared as well. Robert Brookfield has been restoring power to the Richmond area for more than three decades. He has some concerns about Irma.
"Isabel wasn't that powerful. This one is," he said.
Even an extensive amount of wind and rain could mean crews will be on the road.
"The ground is soaked right now from the rain we got yesterday," says Brookfield. "If we get more rain and the wind picks up 10, 20, 30 miles an hour, it's going to knock some trees down."
In addition, don't forget your free NBC12 First Alert Weather App to stay aware of the track of the storm. To make it work even better for you, select "Radar" at the bottom of the screen, then select the Map Layers button, next to the Past | Future time (looks like three squares stacked together). That will bring up all the layers that you can tap into - radar, satellite, wind speed, etc. It also shows different Overlays and Alerts - in particular, what you need to put on here is "Tropical" alerts and "Tropical Tracks" in Overlays. Exit the Map Layers menu by tapping the X in the top corner, and now you should see on the radar the latest information on any tropical storms or hurricanes that are out in the Atlantic.
Consider packing these items in a hurricane survival kit:
Copyright 2017 WWBT NBC12. All rights reserved