First Selectman Bill Brennan, on behalf of the Wilton Emergency Management Team, issued the following statement and emergency management advance preparation guide in light of a possible hurricane this weekend:
“The Town’s Emergency Management Team urges all citizens to start preparations to cope with a serious storm that most likely will impact our area as early as Sunday evening, Oct. 4. Stay tuned to local media for further updates. Take action now. We will continue to provide updates as we obtain more information.”
Hurricane Joaquin, which is now in the vicinity of the Central Bahamas is expected to turn north on Friday night and Saturday, according to the National Weather Service.
As of 5 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 1, Joaquin is a category 4 hurricane with maximum sustained winds near 130 mph, with higher gusts. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 45 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 175 miles.
As of now, the forecast shows tropical storm conditions possible for Wilton beginning Sunday night, Oct. 4, and continuing on Monday. The low on Sunday night will be around 57; the high on Monday will be near 69.
To prepare for severe weather, the Wilton Emergency Management Team urges citizens:
• Prepare a storm/disaster kit;
• Register at wiltonct.org to have the CodeRED emergency management status update messages to home and cell phones.
Before the storm arrives:
• Make sure gutters and downspouts are clear of debris.
• Check and clear any storm drains near your home.
• Secure deck/patio furniture and other yard items.
• Make sure the manual release for any electric garage door openers are working in case of a power outage.
• If very high winds are expected, consider placing plywood over glass windows and doors and/or duct tape on large windows to minimize damage.
• Locate utility (gas, electricity, etc.) shut offs.
• Consider an inventory of household and valuable items. You can use your cell phone to video the entire inside and outside of your home to document the contents and conditions of items. This is a good way for the insurance company to verify the conditions prior to any damage having been sustained.
• Verify and write down the phone number to report an insurance claim, as well as the name and phone number of your insurance agent.
• Vehicle fuel tanks filled.
• Turn your refrigerator and freezer to the coldest setting. Keep them closed as much as possible so that food will last longer if the power goes out.