The New Jersey Office of Emergency Management (OEM) and the National Weather Service are closely monitoring Tropical Storm Sandy to see what impact it might have on the area as it moves up the coast.
While the track of the storm has yet to be finalized Monmouth County officials are also urging residents to be prepared for what may be heading our way. "We have seen the damage that a hurricane can cause and I hope that residents will take precautions as we monitor the progression of this storm," Freeholder Lillian G. Burry said. "
Sheriff Shaun Golden said the storm could potentially affect the length of the east coast from Florida to New York.
On its Facebook page the OEM reports, "There is a potential for a very powerful and dangerous autumn storm to affect our region early next week." The statement continues, "There is a growing threat of strong winds, very heavy rainfall, coastal flooding and inland flooding to affect our region early next week."
The National Weather Service says the impact the storm has on the area depends on how the storm tracks over the next five days or so. While it is currently listed as a Tropical Storm as of Tuesday the National Weather Service expects it to be upgraded to a hurricane on Wednesday and move north.
Whether the storm moves out to sea or up the coast the National Weather Service says a large area could be affected based on the size of the predicted storm. They also expect it to be a slow moving storm which could mean more damage for the area it crosses.
With the potential for strong storms the county urged residents to take these steps:
Prepare – Assemble a Kit of Emergency Supplies – Batteries, flashlight, radio, first-aid kit, medications, food and water to last three or more days, can opener, cooking tools, toiletries.
Plan – Create an Emergency Plan – Your family may not be together when disaster strikes, so plan a way to contact one another, such as enlisting the help of a third party in another state as a contact, and review what you will do in different situations.
Stay Informed – “Like” the Monmouth County Government Facebook page, follow the county on Twitter and visit the county Web site frequently for information and links to important resources. Also, listen to local radio and television for the latest information on storms and other emergencies. Review what warning sirens are used in your community to alert residents of major emergencies.
Golden said preparation can make all the difference. "The survival of you and your family will depend on the measures you take to prepare yourself for an emergency situation," he said.
Burry added, "To be truly equipped for an emergency situation you should prepare your finances and consider making yourself available to help your neighbors in an emergency."
Stay with Patch for more information as the storm develops.