Tropical Storm Mindy was a nonevent for our coverage area. 

But Mindy served a purpose. 

The fast moving storm that made landfall in the gulf Wednesday was not expected to develop into a named storm until suddenly it did. 

This time of year, it is important for everyone to stay prepared for the fast forming storms. 

There are a few things we can all do way ahead of time when we are not frantically trying to get ready for a storm that is closing in on us. 

Every household should have an emergency kit that includes bottled water, nonperishable food items, first aid kit, essential medicines, personal hygiene items, flashlights, batteries and an emergency weather radio if possible. 

When a storm approaches it is important that you have a safe place in your home designated, that your car is full of gasoline, all your devices are fully charged and double check your emergency kit to make sure it is fully stocked. 

Of course, another important way to prepare is to make sure you receive all weather watches and warnings as soon as possible.

All weather alerts should be taken seriously. You can get severe weather alerts on your cell phone or mobile device, and you do not have to be a subscriber to The Valdosta Daily Times to receive weather alerts and breaking news.

When severe weather approaches, you can be among the first to know. With The Valdosta Daily Times text-alert app, you can also be among the first to know when a violent crime takes place in the community and police are looking for a suspect or when there is a major accident on the interstate and traffic comes to halt.

The Valdosta Daily Times is committed to being the leading news source for South Georgia and providing the news to our communities in every way possible. There is no cost to receive a daily weather forecast and top headlines on your cell phone or tablet.

The Times’ text-alert system allows you to customize the types of text messages pushed directly to your mobile device. You can choose which categories you are interested in, including daily weather reports, top headlines, breaking news, weather alerts, missing children alerts, sports updates and more.

To start receiving Your News. Your Way:

(1) select “Subscribe” in the navigation bar on the website then select “Text Alert”;

(2) select the Text Alerts button also located on the homepage; or

(3) paste the line: in your browser.

Text alerts to your mobile device, email newspapers, daily website updates, Facebook and Twitter posts, and of course, the traditional printed edition of the newspaper give you the news every possible way and are each a part of our efforts to be the leading source of news and information for and about Valdosta, Lowndes County and South Georgia.

We are committed to being Your News. Your Voice. Your Times.

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