Hurricane Sandy: County Urges Putnam Folks to Prepare

Officials say the storm will start Sunday and run into Wednesday.

Members of Putnam County's Emergency Management team sent the following via NY-Alert at about 2 p.m. Saturday:

Headline: Putnam County Urges Residents to Prepare for the Arrival of a Dangerous Coastal Storm. Winds and Heavy Rain Will Begin Sunday and Last Into Wednesday

We continue to monitor the progress of Hurricane Sandy as it heads towards our region. MaryEllen Odell, Putnam County Executive, along with County Emergency Response Officials participated in a National Weather Service briefing. Following is an overview of the current and predicted conditions.

As the storm continues to move closer to our area it still has some unpredictable attributes. We advise all residents and visitors to Putnam County to prepare now. Charge your cell phone and have a car charger available. Have a battery powered radio and flashlights as well as extra batteries on hand. Make sure you have enough medications (prescriptions and over the counter) on hand for all family members for at least one week. Inspect your house and surrounding areas for loose items, secure anything that can move in high winds. Go to http://www.ready.gov for more storm preparation tips.

The storm convergence models are now indicating more certainty in the storm making landfall anywhere from Virginia to Cape Cod. Most forecasters are focusing on the center of the storm coming ashore in Southern New Jersey. Currently we are looking at wind and rain beginning Sunday, October 28, 2012, late afternoon/early evening. Wind and rain will intensify overnight with Monday into Monday night being the worst.

On the National Weather Service website (www.weather.gov) it shows a predicted 1 – 3 inches of rain for this event however the lead forecaster for this region says he believes it is more like 3 – 6 inches. This is still better than the forecast from yesterday when it was predicted to be 4 – 8 inches. Sunday October 28, 2012 during the day, winds will gradually intensify to 15 – 20 MPH with gusts of 30 MPH. After sunset Sunday the wind will increase to 39 – 53 MPH sustained. Monday (especially into the evening) winds will increase to 40 – 60 MPH sustained with gust of 70 – 80 MPH possible.

On Friday the storm began to lose its organization and fall apart. On Saturday morning the storm actually began to reform and intensify, and there is once again a defined center. Forecast models still show that the storm will interact with other weather systems and turn into a dangerous coastal storm. This results in a very large storm as the center will once again lose its definition and also a slow moving storm meaning it will be with us for 3 or more days.
 Putnam’s Hudson River communities need to prepare for a higher than normal tidal surge. Due to atmospheric conditions and an increasing East Fetch (sustaining winds and atmospheric pressure that do not allow normal drainage of previous high tides) it is predicted that the tidal surge will equal Hurricane Irene’s in 2011. In addition the longer storm duration will result in up to 3 higher than normal tidal cycles.

Temperatures will remain slightly above seasonal at the onset, but as the storm mixes with a cold front, temperatures will begin to descend into slightly lower than seasonal. By Wednesday we will see temperatures of 50 F during the day and 40 F overnight. There are no below freezing temperatures predicted.
 We should be prepared for flooding conditions as the remaining leaf cover is removed from trees. This can create blockage for normal drainage paths such as small streams.

In preparation for this event, take time now to review your Personal Storm Emergency Plan and
Have an Emergency GO Kit (everything you need if you have to leave your house)
Establish a Family Communication Plan (how will you communicate with your family during and after the event?)
Know your surroundings; is your property flood prone? Take protective action now!
If you have a generator, be sure it has been installed by a qualified electrician. You MUST have a transfer switch installed to prevent dangerous electricity from injuring utility crews as they repair damaged lines

 We will continue to monitor the situation and keep you advised.

Click here for more information on Hurricane Sandy, and the impact in Putnam. Click here to learn more about NY-Alert, which requires individuals to register.

And don't forget to shate updates (cancellations, downed trees, outages, etc.) and weather-related photos! You can leave them here, or email Ashley.Tarr@Patch.com.

babypotato October 28, 2012 at 12:08 AM
FYI, guy at the wine and liquor store in lakeview plaza guarantees that he's open no matter WHAT
Bob Dumont October 28, 2012 at 06:30 PM
have they suspended any bus service?
Ashley Tarr (Editor) October 28, 2012 at 10:43 PM
Thanks for asking Bob. I just heard back from an official, who said he didn't have specifics, but that modifications for the bus service are in the works. The official details will come through NY-Alert, so I'll be sure to update once that happens.
Ashley Tarr (Editor) October 29, 2012 at 04:23 AM
Putnam County News & Recorder (http://www.pcnr.com/news/2012-10-24/Front_Page/COUNTY_DIGS_IN.html) is reporting that bus service will stop at 2 p.m. Monday. I'll let you know if I hear anything different.


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