Governor Bob McDonnell has declared a state of emergency in Virginia in preparation for Hurricane Sandy, which is anticipated to affect the Commonwealth over the weekend and early next week. There is some uncertainty with the storm's final track, but the state is preparing for significant impact.
Based on current forecasts, the Williamsburg area could see strong winds and significant rainfall beginning Saturday and extending through late Monday. There is a strong possibility of extensive power outages. Predictions at this point are for wind gusts up to 50 mph, but the National Weather Service is also stressing that there will most likely be continuous, heavy rainfall and sustained winds until Tuesday.
The City is closely monitoring the developments of Hurricane Sandy and will share any updates and information as they become available. As we wait to learn more about its course and expected impact, it is essential to prepare for a significant storm.
Here are some things you can do now:
- The city has created a dedicated webpage for updates: williamsburgva.gov/sandy2012. There are also links to creating a family emergency plan and information about sheltering your pets.
- Sign up to receive Emergency Updates via email through Enotify
- Follow the City on Facebook (Williamsburg.Virginia) and Twitter (@WilliamsburgGov) for real-time updates
- Receive alerts and updates and report service requests via text messages on your smart phone. Sign up at CITY411
- Watch WMSBG Channel 48 for City of Williamsburg bulletins.
- Watch weather advisory television channels to track storm or go to the National Weather Service.
- Call 220-6161, the City's Human Services Department, for special needs assistance.
- Prepare to "shelter in place" with provisions enough to live without power, public drinking water, and other public services for at least a week. Some suggestions:
• Purchase a simple weather radio with battery backup.
• Clean and fill bathtub with fresh water and 1/2 teaspoon Clorox.
• Locate ALL utility shutoff valves.
- Learn your evacuation routes. The City of Williamsburg is a host jurisdiction during an evacuation of coastal areas. If citizens need to evacuate, Interstate 64 and Route 60 West are the primary routes to leave the City.
- Know your Neighborhood Response Team (NRT). The NRT are trained citizen volunteers in your neighborhood who assist City officials during emergencies. For more information, contact the Human Services Department at 757-220-6161.
Useful Phone Numbers:
Police non-emergency: 220-2331
Fire non-emergency: 220-6220
Public Works: 220-6140 (After hours 220-6196)
City Manager's Office: 220-6100
Human Services Department: 220-6161
Dominion VA Power: 1-888-667-3000
Virginia Natural Gas: 1-877-572-3342
Cox Communications: 1-757-224-1111
Verizon Telephone: 1-800-275-2355
Other Useful Emergency Preparedness Websites
Virginia Department of Emergency Management
American Red Cross