New Canaan Fire Marshal: Hurricane Preparedness


Downed trees and limbs along Nursery Street following a brief, powerful storm on June 30, 2019. Photo published with owner's permission

It’s that time of year again, we are at the peak of the hurricane season. With many active systems currently forming in the Atlantic, I would urge all residents to make preparations if you have not already sone so. Our emergency operations director, Russ Kimes, offers some tips in the New Canaanite.

Fire Marshal Paul Payne. Credit: Michael Dinan

In addition, residents are advised to do the following:

  • Service your generator annually and have adequate fuel on hand.
  • Have enough batteries on hand for lighting lanterns and candles (battery operated candles and lanterns are a better option than an open flame).
  • Consider alternate cooking means, if this will be a portable or camp stove, cooking should be done outdoors.
  • 3-4 days before a storm purchase supplies and build a preparedness kit.
  • 1 day before the storm, fill bathtubs with water for non-potable needs.

After the Storm

There will be many instances of downed trees throughout the town and in many cases utility lines will be brought down with them. Many of these utility lines will be power lines that remain energized on the ground. As these downed trees are reported to emergency services responders will use barriers and/or caution tape to warn of the danger. Warning tape and barricades are there for your safety. DO NOT MOVE barriers and do not go through or around these barriers. If these barriers are moved the next person may think it is now ok for them to pass. Treat every downed wire as if it is live.

If you think that it cannot happen here, New Canaan Police Officer James Martin was electrocuted when he came in contact with a downed power line on Valley Road on July 23, 1991, while responding to a motor vehicle accident. May he Rest in Peace and may his tragic death remind us of the true dangers on the roads.

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