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Mississippi residents told to prepare for tropical weather

JACKSON (AP) — People living along the Mississippi Gulf Coast should pay attention to local emergency officials as Tropical Storm Nate moves through the Gulf of Mexico.

That’s what Lee Smithson, director of the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency, is saying Thursday.

Smithson says coastal residents should start making their own storm preparations. He says county emergency management directors will decide later whether to recommend evacuations.

Smithson says people should not be complacent about the possibility of a relatively weak hurricane. He says most fatalities during hurricanes happen because of drowning, not because of wind speed. Hurricanes can also cause spin-off tornadoes and power outages.