Hidalgo County helping residents prepare for hurricane season through cooking lessons

Local News

MERCEDES, Texas (KVEO) — June is a historic month for flooding in the RGV. It can leave people without electricity and stranded in their homes for days, which is preparation is key. 

The national hurricane center is predicting an above average season for the sixth consecutive year. 

“We’ve already entered the hurricane season,” Hidalgo County Judge Richard Cortez said. “I was at the island the other day and I was wading in the water and the water is very warm. Usually, when the water is warm it affects hurricanes. Hopefully it won’t.” 

To help get people prepared should things take a turn for the worst, the county is partnering with its precincts and the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension for a Cooking School for Emergencies to teach people what foods to keep in stock and how to prepare meals without any power. 

The first lesson will be held today in precinct 1 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Mercedes Dome Shelter. Officials will go over how to feed yourself and your family during a natural disaster. 

““It’s become almost common now to lose power, and a lot of people obviously keep their food in their refrigerators and then they have no electricity to cook,” Hidalgo County Judge Richard Cortez said. “The lessons will go over what to buy, what to have in inventory in case you don’t have electricity to cook, how to save some of your food, what kind of cans to have. We’re asking everybody to prepare for three days — usually three days is the worst-case scenario.” 

He adds the RGV has been through a lot over the past 15 months, from the pandemic to 2020’s hurricanes to February’s freeze, so they are prepared for anything. Across the county, they have increased brush pickups and are taking other measures to mitigate the effects of potential flooding. 

“Flooding is not a good thing, so we want to make sure we have all the pumps and equipment that’s available for us to help those areas that flood, and shelters,” Cortez said. “We’re working with the Red Cross and all the other non-governmental organizations to be ready to serve the people and take care of them during these emergencies. 

“I want all the people of Hidalgo County to know that we’re ready and we ask you all to be ready.” 

Pre-registration is encouraged, but if you can’t make it, you can watch the live stream on Facebook. Click here to register and to view the schedule for upcoming sessions. 

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