From left: NWS Brownsville MIC Steve Drillette, WCM Barry Goldsmith (seated), Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) Region 3 Commander Joe Rodriguez, and Texas DPS Region 3 Emergency Management Coordinator Tony Pena opening the Rio Grande Valley Partners' Hurricane Workshop in Weslaco, Texas. (Photo:WFO Brownsville)
(June 7, 2012) - WFO Brownsville recently conducted several outreach events to underscore the importance of public and private partnerships in building a Hurricane-Ready Rio Grande Valley. The goal was to help thousands of residents, community leaders and media on both sides of the border recognize the importance of preparing for hurricanes.
A standing room only crowd of more than 100 emergency management and media professionals were on hand for a hurricane workshop at the Texas Department of Public Safety facility in Weslaco, Texas on May 23. Brownsville MIC Steve Drillette, WCM Barry Goldsmith, and Tropical Program Leader Justin Gibbs discussed the importance of partnerships and myths and truths about pre-season Atlantic basin hurricane forecasts.
Over the years, the workshop has blossomed from a handful of primary emergency officials to a roomful of people representing nearly every Emergency Support Function in the National Incident Management System.
"It's heartening to see the incredible growth of the Rio Grande Valley Hurricane Workshop", said Goldsmith. MIC Steve Drillette added, "Trusted partners are critical to our success in building our corner of a Weather Ready Nation".
Hurricane Social with the U.S. Consulate General
NWS Brownsville was invited to give the keynote presentation at the U.S. Consulate General residence on May 31. Forecasters discussed hurricane preparedness and the 2012 hurricane season outlook with the consulate staff, members of Proteccíon Civil (Civil Defense) and broadcasters from Televisa Noreste.
Brownsville WCM Barry Goldsmith with FOX Channel 2/Univision Channel 48 weather broadcaster Brenda Cantu at Walmart in McAllen, Texas (Photo: WFO Brownsville)
Texas Hurricane Guide Distribution
For the second year in a row, Walmart shoppers across the Rio Grande Valley were able to meet Brownsville staffers during Hurricane Preparedness Week.
Walmart personnel worked closely with the office staff to stage booths at a dozen stores to promote hurricane preparedness. Approximately 1,500 hurricane guides were distributed to shoppers during 15 separate visits.
Working with media sponsor KFXV-FOX-2/KNVO-Univision-48, the staff also distributed English and Spanish editions of the guides in five stores June 1 to mark the official start of the 2012 hurricane season.
"Having television personalities assist our office staff increases the reach of the hurricane guide and highlights the excellent public/private partnership with the National Weather service," said Goldsmith.
In addition, more than 10,000 English/Spanish guides were distributed to emergency management, health, education and other partners who gave them to residents throughout the Rio Grande Valley. Across the border, Proteccíon Civil announced plans to reproduce 20,000 guides and distribute them to residents of Matamoros.