Oh no, Jose, you had better not.
As Robeson County residents on Tuesday, blessed with some periods of blue skies, counted our blessings that Hurricane Irma was a breeze — and a bit wet locally — we have a new worry, a hurricane in the Atlantic Ocean that is forecast to do some loops before deciding to go who knows where.
North Carolina, once again, is a possibility for being in the way of a hurricane, and given that Irma has left us soaked, we don’t need another rain event. Remember what happened when Matthew followed Hermine, and they were separated by six weeks?
Of course you do. We are likely to never forget.
And we should not forget our friends in Florida and Texas, who got the worst of Irma and Harvey, and are left as we were in the days following Oct. 8, 2016 — dazed and confused, and wondering if normalcy will ever be restored to their everyday lives.
Those of you who are anxious to help can do so by taking needed supplies, you know what they are, to the warehouse at 2300 Cedar St., where Sharon Hunt, the assistant to Lumberton’s city manager, and volunteers are doing what they can to help hurricane victims. Included among those needy are Matthew victims, who continue to return to their homes, too many of which are without funishings.
After the storm is over is when the second guessing is done, and we saw some of that on social media this week, when people were critical of the decision by the Public Schools of Robeson County to recess school early on Monday and then start it late on Tuesday. These are always difficult decisions to make, and when the right call is made, hardly anyone notices, but if the wrong call is made, then the critics are loud and plenty — and sometimes on the phone with an attorney.
The decisions are not made easier by the uncertainty that is always part of a weather forecast, including where a storm will hit and how hard.
There simply is no cargo more precious than our children, and the decision by school administrators not to put them on buses in potentially windy and wet conditions is one we applaud. We understand that when school is out at noon or begins two hours late, it disrupts the flow of the family’s day, and that parents might have other duties and be in need of a babysitter.
But we know as well that if the worst were to happen, a school bus were to hydroplane and multiple children suffered bumps and bruises or even worse, then school administrators would find themselves not only on defense in trying to explain their decision, but most likely defendants in civil suits.
The handful of hours of missed classroom time at the front of a school year can easily be recaptured, and there simply was no compelling reason for those who are charged with making weighty decisions to err on any other side than caution.
And speaking of caution, once again Robeson County residents must keep a hurricane watch, this time on Jose. It appears that local residents took the Irma threat seriously, filled up their vehicles, stocked their homes with bread and water, and did all the things that one can for a potentially catastrophic weather event.
Be prepared to do it again, and hope it is just another rehearsal.