Hurricane Sandy seems to be headed our way, so Reading and North Reading are taking preventative measures to ensure safety for residents. To prepare for the storm yourself, take a look at our tips for preparing a disaster kit.
In preparation for Hurricane Sandy, Reading Fire Chief Greg Burns is keeping his eye on the storm. He will be participating in a conference call with MEMA directors and the National Weather Service to see where they think the storm is heading Friday.
Burns had a crew remove the flag display in the square Thursday to ensure that would not be damaged in high winds.
He recommends that residents prepare by bringing outdoor items, like grills and furniture, inside.
Director of Public Works Jeffrey T. Zager said that he had his crew checking the areas around town that are prone to flooding Thursday. They cleaned out the catch basins and drains "to help the cause."
He may also have his crew take down some banners around town to prepare for the storm in the coming days.
North Reading Fire Chief William Warnock will be meeting with Town Administrator Greg Balukonis, Police Chief Michael Murphy, DPW Director Richard Carnavale and Emergency Management Director Theophilos Kuliopulos tomorrow morning regarding the storm.
Warnock and his crew also made sure their mechanic checked the power tools Thursday to make sure they were ready to go for the storm.
Warnock added that if the storm does come as predicted, the Fire Deparment can react in a short amount of time to make sure citizens are safe and that the department does have policies in place for adverse weather.
According to Director of Public Works Richard Carnavale is preparing for the storm by "reviewing DPW safety procedures, DPW operational policies and procedures, checking our equipment, materials and supplies, and checking low areas in town to make sure the storm drains are flowing properly."
The DPW staff and foremen met Thursday to go over “After Action Reviews” from last years Hurricane Irene and October storm and to discuss how they will respond to Hurricane Sandy if it affects New England, Carnevale said.
Carnavale also shared some things that have been implemented since last year's storm:
- The town wide CodeRED reverse 911 emergency notification system
- The DPW installed a radio repeater on a water tank to improve the DPW primary communication system
- The DPW upgraded their ability to respond to emergencies through critical equipment and tool upgrades
- The DPW installed an emergency power generator at Town Hall to enhance continuity of communications with residents