With Hurricane Sandy expected to arrive in the area sometime Sunday the Howell Township administration is advising residents to prepare themselves ahead of time.
In an email from Mayor Robert Walsh and the Council "The potential continues to increase for strong damaging winds, extremely heavy rainfall and major flooding." It added, "Residents should also plan for extended power outages."
In the email residents are encouraged to take several steps to get ready for the storm including bringing in "all outside furniture, garbage cans, sports apparatus," among other things or ensure that they are secured in a way that they will not blow away.
Residents are also asked to remove brush or leaves that may have been left at the curbside for collection. "You should remove it as it may cause damage to your home and property," the email said.
All essential personnel are encouraged to make arrangements for their transportation ahead of the storm and all residents should make sure they have an emergency kit prepared.
Howell Office of Emergency Management Director Ron Sanasac said preparation is key as the storm approaches. He said all residents, particularly those impacted by Hurricane Irene should have an alternate place to go depending on the storms intensity as part of their readiness for its arrival. He also said it is important to have a supply of fresh water with the possibility of extended power outages.
The township is also instituting a new Global Connect Alert system that can send emergency information to cell phones or other phones as the storm continues. The form to register can be found here. Township Manager Helene Schlegel said any residents who had registered for the previous Code Red system will still have their landlines in the system but not cell phones or any alternate numbers provided.
Sanasac said the township may institute its Emergency Operations Center but there has been no decision as to when that will happen. Contact information for the center will be available when it is established. "We urge all residents to prepare and be safe," he said.