SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – The 2022 hurricane season is predicted to be a busier-than-average storm season with 14 to 21 named storms expected.

As the season gets underway, grocery stores in Savannah like Kroger, Chu’s Supermarket and Walmart say they’re prepared to service customers confidently through local supplies and knowledge from past experiences.

“Kroger does have emergency preparedness plans in place for natural disasters such as hurricanes,” said Felix Turner, corporate affairs manager for The Kroger Company. “There are many different logistical components we deploy simultaneously when the threat of a hurricane is imminent.”

(AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

He continued: “We source items locally whenever possible, which allows us to retain a diverse group of suppliers and facilitates greater inventory stability.”

That diverse group includes partnerships with global, large, small and local suppliers as they continue their mission of being a leader in the distribution and merchandising of food, pharmacy, health and personal care items and seasonal items.

Another part of Kroger’s emergency preparedness plan is being ready to serve customers after the hurricane.

“Primarily, we station maintenance teams, refrigerated trucks and products in surrounding areas, so supplies such as bread, water, milk, ice and fuel can be replenished as quickly as possible once the storm clears,” said Turner. “We also monitor and replenish stores along evacuation routes to help ensure that supplies are available to evacuees.”

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Known for having reasonable prices on items like soft drinks, vegetables and freshly butchered meat, locally owned Chu’s Supermarket says it will be prepared to service customers readying for a hurricane. 

Co-owner Melissa Chu said she is confident the supermarket will have vital supplies like water for customers this hurricane season.

“The past three years we have been OK during hurricane season,” Chu said. “People usually come here for our soft drinks. We will have plenty of drinks, including water.”

Walmart is also prepared for a possible active hurricane season. 

“The firm belief that sparked in us after Hurricane Katrina remains the same,” said Brooks Nelson, senior manager for Disaster Preparedness and Response at Walmart. “By using our resources and learnings from the past 15 years, we know we can have a major impact in helping our neighbors prepare for, and respond to, disasters.”

(AP Photo/Alan Diaz, File)

Some of the resources and learnings from the past that Walmart uses is data to identify, assess and help manage risks related to areas such as weather. From the data, they are able to anticipate customer and community needs following a storm to help them know where to direct necessary supplies for potential disasters.

Walmart also uses data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Hurricane Center and Weather Prediction Center to assess risks from hazards such as hurricanes and ice storms several days out to anticipate community needs and prepare for their response.

NOAA’s outlook for the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season, which extends from June 1 to Nov. 30, predicts a 65% chance of an above-normal season, a 25% chance of a near-normal season and a 10% chance of a below-normal season.

Should we see above-average hurricane activity, this year would be the seventh consecutive above-average hurricane season.