MIAMI–Credit unions and their members across Florida are preparing for the arrival of Hurricane Irma, a category 5 storm that has already wreaked havoc in the Caribbean.
Several CUs have already announced branch closures, with one CU reporting a member going to some length to avoid using gas, with many gas stations either reporting long lines or that they are out of gas. Florida Gov. Rick Scott has declared a state of emergency for all Florida counties.
The League of Southeastern Credit Unions has distributed tips to credit unions on dealing with numerous issues, from mortgage closings to storm prep. The LSCU reminded all credit unions to have on hand fresh supplies in their emergency supply kits, including water and batteries, to consider increasing cash orders, to raise all computer equipment if in an area of potential flooding, and to update contact lists, among other steps. Credit unions are also being reminded to ensure employees are personally prepared.
In north central Florida, Steven Nazaruk, CEO of Ocala Community Credit Union, said his CU has been informing members of the tools at their disposal in the event of a storm. Noting that gas stations in the area are already out of fuel, he said one member, seeking to conserve what gas he has in his truck, walked to the credit union.
In the Florida Keys, Keys FCU has already closed all of its branches due to mandatory evacuations. And, as CUToday.info reported earlier, Space Coast CU has announced that some of its southeastern Florida locations are closed.