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Norwalk is in a tropical storm warning; officials offer info and tips

(National Weather Service)

NORWALK, Conn. — Tropical Storm Henri may hit Norwalk and the National Weather Service warns you to plan for “life threatening wind of equivalent CAT 1 or 2 hurricane force.”

The City is actively preparing for Henri and closely monitoring the path, a news release said, warning residents of possible heavy rain, winds and power outages, and coastal and urban flooding as well.

“Boat owners should also ensure their boats are secured or removed from the water. Residents who live close to the water and in areas that usually flood during storms or extremely high tides, should move their cars on Saturday. The Maritime and Yankee Doodle garages will be open for residents to park for free,” the release said.

At 2 a.m. Saturday, the Weather Service said Henri may bring winds of 74 to 110 miles per hour. A life-threatening storm surge is possible, the potential for 3- feet above ground “somewhere within surge prone areas” at high tide. Peak rainfall may bring an additional 3- inches, with locally higher amounts.

The situation is unfavorable for tornadoes, the Weather Service said.

Gov. Ned Lamont has declared a State of Emergency and called out the National Guard.

“Major General Francis Evon, Adjutant General and Commander of the Connecticut National Guard, is calling 200 Guardsmen and women to state active duty beginning on Saturday morning to prepare teams and specialized equipment in support of the state’s response,” a news release said. “Expected missions include high-wheeled vehicle search and rescue, route clearance, power generation, and commodities distribution, but may shift depending on the actual impact of the storm.”

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) administrators have promised assistance as needed, the release said. Lamont directed the Connecticut State Emergency Operations Center to become partially activated today, Saturday, Aug. 21, and fully activated by Sunday morning.

“With the current forecasted track of Henri, we can expect heavy rainfall and high winds, with the potential for a significant amount of coastal flooding and urban flooding across Connecticut,” Lamont is quoted as saying. “Right now, it’s a good idea for everyone to be prepared and expect to shelter in place by Sunday afternoon through at least Monday morning. We’ll continue to monitor the storm’s progress and will provide updates as necessary.”

“People in the storm’s track should monitor local weather conditions, listen to the advice of local authorities and evacuate immediately if asked to do so,” the City’s news release said. “Check emergency kits now and have enough supplies for several days if not in an area that is asked to evacuate. There are several helpful free apps to help monitor the weather and stay prepared. The CT PREPARES or AMERICAN RED CROSS- EMERGENCY apps are available for Apple and Android devices.”

It said you should:

  • Create an evacuation plan. Plan what to do in case you are separated from your family during an emergency and if you have to evacuate.
  • Be prepared for power outages. Charge cell phone and tablets as well as batteries needed for medical devices.
  • Build an emergency kit with a gallon of water per person, per day, non-perishable food, a flashlight, battery-powered radio, first aid kit, medications, supplies for infants or pets, a multi- purpose tool, personal hygiene items, copies of important papers, cell phone chargers, extra cash, blankets, maps of the area and emergency contact information.
  • Get your home ready in advance and store outside items to prevent them from being moved by high winds.
  • Fill your car’s gas tank in case an evacuation notice is issued.
  • Know the difference between a watch and a warning. A watch means conditions are likely and to stay alert — a warning means act now. Stay indoors and away from windows.
  • Evacuate in advance if you are told to do so. During a hurricane, stay indoors and avoid beaches, riverbanks or floodwaters.
  • Don’t forget your pets. Bring them indoors and keep a close eye on them. Prepare an emergency kit for your pets with leashes, carriers, food, water, bowls, litter, litter box and photos of you with your pet in case you are separated.

 

The State offered some hurricane preparedness tips:

Recommended items to include in a basic emergency supply kit

  • One gallon of water per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation
  • At least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
  • Battery-powered or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries for both
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • First aid kit
  • A whistle to signal for help
  • Garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation
  • Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
  • A manual can opener for food (if kit contains canned food)
  • Local maps
  • Cell phone with chargers, inverter or solar charger
  • Food and litter requirements for any pets
  • Medicine or any special need items, including diapers for infants
  • Cleaning supplies that disinfect for COVID-19 and face masks should they be needed at a shelter

 

Family emergency plan

  • Be sure you and family members are aware of local shelter locations and your evacuation zone, especially if you live along the shoreline.
  • Identify an out-of-town contact. It may be easier to make a long-distance phone call than to call across town, so an out-of-town contact may be in a better position to communicate among separated family members.
  • Be sure every member of your family knows the phone number and has a cell phone, coins, or a prepaid phone card to call the emergency contact.
  • Plan ahead and pre-set a family group text conversation in your phones. Text messages can often get around network disruptions when a phone call might not be able to get through, and it uses less battery life.
  • Subscribe to alert services through CTAlert. Go to www.ct.gov/ctalert to register.

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