Howard County departments are getting ready for what could be a 100-year storm as Hurricane Sandy heads toward the East Coast.
“Though the track of this storm is still uncertain and may be days away, we are already fully engaged in preparations to handle what may come,” Howard County Executive Ken Ulman said in a statement. “Now is the time for residents to do the same.”
Residents can find out what resources are available to them by using NotifyMeHoward, which will send email and text alerts with important news, and by “liking” the Howard County Facebook page. The county will also send out updates on Twitter: @HoCoGov.
The county recommends residents take the following precautions:
- Check your business, home and yard for anything that could become an airborne threat or cause a hazard. (Lawn furniture, trash cans and loose or freestanding signage).
- Turn off propane tanks
- Prepare for basement flooding by checking that your sump pump is working and clear
- Clear downspouts and direct them away from the foundation of your house
- Make sure pets have collars and identification tags
- Establish a family communication plan: identify an out-of-town contact, teach family members how to use text messaging in the event of problems with telephone networks
- Charge electronic devices including cell phones and keep a battery-powered radio tuned to a local station
- Prepare for power outages by having food and medical supplies, appropriate clothing and blankets and necessities for children and pets.
- If you live in low-lying or flood prone areas you need to be prepared for what could be 48+ hours of heavy rain
- Be sure to use generators safely with proper outdoor ventilation
In preparation of Hurricane Sandy, the Office of Emergency Management, the Maryland Emergency Management Agency and the National Weather Service are holding conference calls twice a day and county officials are reviewing contingency plans an preparing to respond to floods and power outages.
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