AAA: 1 in 6 residents would not evacuate for hurricane

Majority would wait until the hurricane is Category 3 or stronger

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Tourists in Kill Devil Hills, N.C., pack up to avoid Hurricane Irene on Aug. 25. There is a mandatory evacuation in the Outer Banks for visitors.

TAMPA, Fla. - The Atlantic hurricane season doesn't begin until June 1, but a major storm could strike early.

Last year, Tropical Storm Beryl was one of two named storms that formed in May and crossed northeast Florida, leaving behind massive flooding.

This year, 51 percent of residents in the southeast will prepare for hurricane season, according to a recent AAA Consumer Pulse™ survey.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is predicting another active season with 13 to 20 named storms, seven to 11 hurricanes and three to six major hurricanes.

A recent survey shows the strength of the storm has a large impact on whether residents would want to evacuate their home. The majority (55%), say they would evacuate if the storm was a Category 3 or greater. Still, 16 percent of respondents say they would not want to leave their home under any circumstances.

"It's always a difficult decision to leave your home when a hurricane approaches," said Angie LaPlant, director, AAA Public Relations, The Auto Club Group. "Your safety and that of your loved ones should be your number one priority. AAA recommends you follow any and all evacuation warnings. We also encourage residents to make preparations before hurricane season begins, so it's easier to respond when a storm approaches."

Hurricane preparation includes securing your home, developing a family emergency plan, updating your home inventory, and being familiar with your insurance protection. It also means having the necessary supplies on hand, in case you decide to weather the storm.

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