Wires down, New Canaan residents urged to stay indoors
Updated 2:02 am, Monday, August 29, 2011
The Office of Emergency Management (OEM) has enacted a curfew for the safety of residents as Hurricane Irene makes landfall in Connecticut. As of midnight last night, the OEM said "no one should be driving or walking on the roads. The curfew is in effect until further notice."
"Police officers have been withdrawn from the road. Fire and EMS calls are being responded to on a case by case basis depending on the severity and accessibility," Mike Handler, Director of the OEM, said in an emergency notification. "Downed wires are live and are unattended and unmarked. Do not approach downed wires as they are extremely dangerous. Stay indoors. For storm related, non-emergency questions, please call the Emergency Operations Center at 203-594-4100. 911 should be used for emergency calls only."
As of right now, more than 65 percent of residents, 5,732 homes, are without power according to Connecticut Light and Power.
While the storm has officially been downgraded to a tropical storm, severe flooding and winds are still expected according to the National Weather Service.
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The OEM has issued the following tips for residents to follow to stay safe:
- Stay away from downed trees -- live power lines may be involved. Metal fences and guardrails may also become energized;
- Avoid using candles if you lose power. If you must, never leave them unattended and keep them away from combustibles;
- If you have a portable generator, make sure it is outside and if you are back-feeding your home through an outlet, make sure that you turn off the main breaker to avoid back-feeding the street, thereby endangering workers trying to restore power;
"It is expected that it will be several days before some roads are cleared and as long as a week before full power is restored," the statement said. "Residents are requested to be patient and check on neighbors."
The OEM has set up a Facebook page that is getting minute by minute updates by residents and all the volunteers at the command center at the New Canaan Police Department. Everyone from future Selectman Nick Williams, Selectman Rob Mallozzi to Deputy Director of the OEM Jim Cole has been manning the center along with approximately 30 other volunteers for the past 24 hours.
The Facebook page can be found at www.newcanaanoem.com. According to the page, the following roads are effected with down power lines and trees:
Spring Water Lane Closed
Cheesespring and Benedict Hill
Tree Down at 242 Silvermine Rd
279 West Rd, Trees On Wires
612 Laurel Rd Closed
111 Oenoke Ridge, Tree Down
51 Bittersweet, Tree Down
Rt 123 and Canoe Hill. Tree on Wires