In advance of the arrival of Hurricane Sandy, Port Chester officials have been planning for the storm's impact on the village since Wednesday.
Village Manager Christopher Steers said Port Chester is ready to turn the Village Court on North Main Street into a command center in case the hurricane slams into our area.
"All essential personnel are on alert," Steers said following a conference call with Westchester County emergency officials.
Throughout the day on Friday, Steers said village officials and workers have been making preparations and checking equipment in case the storm causes flooding and other damage locally.
Port Chester has already:
- Postponed the Halloween in the Park event that was set for Monday night; it has been moved to Tuesday at Lyon Park, but that too may change based on the storm's progress.
- The Village Court has been advised to cancel Monday's session.
- The village Planning Board has been advised to cancel its Monday meeting.
- The Port Chester Senior Center Halloween event on Tuesday has been cancelled.
Steers said the Port Chester Senior Center is scheduled to be open on Monday so it can provide food services to local seniors.
In addition to having village equipment ready for clean up efforts, Steers said the village has contracts in place with companies that can be called in to assist with debris removal. He noted the village has also been in contact with utilities to coordinate emergency response.
Port Chester has not yet scheduled any facilities to be open as emergency shelters. However, Steers said Port Chester High School could serve as a shelter if necessary. Steers said the village would consult with the Red Cross on shelter facilities if the storm impact rises to the level that a shelter is needed.
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo on Friday afternoon declared a state of emergency in New York in preparation for the potential impact of Hurricane Sandy. A state of emergency mobilizes resources to local governments that otherwise are restricted to state use only and suspends regulations that would impede rapid response.
A key issue of Port Chester, Steers said, is getting the message out to village residents that during the storm they should only call the police and fire departments for emergency matters — not for routine information or questions about power outages or travel.
Officials urge residents to only call 911 for emergencies, and use the free 211 service for getting help with non-emergency matters.
If you have questions:
- First and foremost --Do not call 911 for non-emergencies
- An alternative contact number is United Way's 211 HelpLine
- ConEd power outage or gas and electrical service problems: (800) 75-CONED
- Thruway: (800)-THRUWAY for updated NY state thruway information
- Bee-Line Buses: (914) 813-7777 for bus service status or (914) 995-7272 and press 2 at the prompt, for paratransit status
- Airline arrivals: Call the carrier directly or for real-time flight information go to the Westchester County Airport Web site
- Metro-North Railroad: (800) METRO INFO
- School closings and delays: Patch, WFAS storm center, News 12 or WCBS radio.
Storm Preparation Tips:
- Check all emergency supplies and equipment.
- Monitor weather reports.
- Keep a portable radio and flashlight on hand with fresh batteries.
- Keep a first aid kit available and make sure there is ample supply of medicines on hand for those who require them.
- Clear your yard of loose objects.
- Store sufficient drinking water for each family member. A gallon a day for each individual in your household is recommended.
- Store important documents in waterproof containers.
- If ordered to evacuate comply immediately!
- Plan your evacuation route ahead of time. Make arrangements now by identifying a friend or family member located away from non-threatened areas. Also make arrangements for pets should you need to evacuate as most shelters will not accept pets.
Spread the word
If you see a problem related to the storm when it hits, share the info here on Patch. Post a comment or upload a photo or a video of storm-related problems or damage. Help you neighbors know if there is a tree down or a road closed by flooding.