October 29, 2012 - WATERBURY - The Vermont State Emergency
Operations Center opened with state and federal personnel at 7 a.m.
Monday. The team is tracking the storm and is ready to
respond should any communities need assistance.
Governor Peter Shumlin declared a State of Emergency
for Vermont in advance of the storm on Sunday. The
designation will allow the state to use National Guard and other
federal resources if needed.
The National Weather Service reports that wherever
the storm makes landfall, the main threat from the storm will
likely behigh windsbeginning during the day Monday. NWS says
60-80 mile per hour wind gusts are expected along the Green
Mountains and in the Northeast Kingdom.
Localized flooding is also possible where the rain is
heaviest. Flooding is possible anywhere, but NWS says the
southern half of Vermont is the most susceptible. The forecast can
be found at http://www.erh.noaa.gov/er/btv/
The Vermont Emergency Operations Center will be fully
staffed on Monday morning and will remain open as long as
necessary. State preparedness activities include:
- Conference calls were held this morning with
legislators and city Mayors.
- Vermont State Police have put all personnel on road
duty and will put more and more Troopers on the road as the storm
- Chainsaw crews from the Agency of Natural Resources
are on standby to help with clearing of debris.
- Swiftwater and technical rescue crews will be
staged as necessary.
- State police mobile command posts are on standby
for quick deployment when needed.
- State utilities have brought in extra line crews
from out of state to help with restoration efforts.
- The National Guard is prepared to assist with tree
clearing, swiftwater rescues, or any other missions deemed
- The Red Cross is prepared to open shelters should
homes lose power for extended periods - a listing of shelters will
be shared with the media once they open.
If you come across a downed power line, never touch
it - all power lines should be treated as if they are live at all
times. When clearing downed trees be sure they are not in
contact with power lines as trees can conduct electricity and you
can be electrocuted.
If you lose power and use a generator make sure it is
always run outdoors and is not blowing exhaust back into your
home. Make sure smoke & carbon monoxide alarms are
working and have fresh back up batteries in them.
Other suggested preparedness actions in advance of
power outages for the public:
- Check flashlights and portable radios to ensure
that they are working, and you have extra batteries. A
battery powered radio is an important source of critical weather
and emergency information during a storm.
- If your water supply could be affected by a power
outage (a well-water pump system), fill your bathtub and spare
containers with water. Water in the bathtub should be used
for sanitation purposes only, not as drinking water. Pouring
a pail of water from the tub directly into the bowl can flush a
- Set your refrigerator and freezer to their coldest
settings (remember to reset them back to normal once power is
restored). During an outage, do not open the refrigerator or
freezer door unnecessarily. Food can stay cold in a full
refrigerator for up to 24 hours, and in a well-packed freezer for
48 hours (24 hours if it is half-packed).
- If you have medication that requires refrigeration,
check with your pharmacist for guidance on proper storage during an
- Follow the manufacturer's instructions and
guidelines when using a generator. Always use outdoors, away
from windows and doors. Carbon Monoxide (CO) fumes are odorless and
can quickly accumulate indoors. Never try to power the house wiring
by plugging the generator directly into household wiring, a
practice known as "backfeeding." This is extremely dangerous and
presents an electrocution risk to utility workers and neighbors
served by the same utility transformer. It also bypasses some of
the built-in household circuit protection devices.
- Make sure your Smoke and Carbon Dioxide detectors
have fresh batteries and are in working order.
- Be extra cautious when you go outside to inspect
for damage after a storm. Downed or hanging electrical wires
can be hidden by trees or debris, and could be live. Never
attempt to touch or move downed lines, and keep children and pets
away from them. Do not touch anything power lines are
touching, such as tree branches or fences. Always assume a
downed line is a live line. Call your utility company to
report any outage-related problem.
For more preparedness tips visit: http://vem.vermont.gov/preparedness.
For shelter information, evacuation information and
other disaster resources call 211 or visit www.vermont211.org/.
For road closures call 511 or visit: www.511vt.com.
Weather Forecast: www.weather.gov/btv or http://www.erh.noaa.gov/aly/
Vermont Emergency Management on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/vermontemergencymanagement