Tropical storm may knock out power, Ridgefield emergency management warns
Take down tents, have enough food and water for several days, and prepare for power outages.
Those are some of the tips that the Ridgefield Office of Emergency Management is recommending ahead of Tropical Storm Isaias’ projected arrival in the tri-state area this week.
Federal forecasters have issued a tropical storm warning for much of coastal Connecticut as Isaias is expected to reach the state Tuesday.
“Tropical storm conditions are expected to reach southern New England on late Tuesday, and are possible along the northern New England coast Tuesday night and early Wednesday,” the National Hurricane Center said Monday morning.
“Heavy rain and strong winds are probable for Ridgefield beginning late Monday with passing bands increasing to tropical storm strength by Tuesday afternoon,” wrote Ridgefield’s Office of Emergency Management in a Facebook post. “Tropical Storm Isaias is a quick mover and should be through our area by early Wednesday morning. Two-to-four inches of rain are expected in our area and 4-to-8 are expected west of New York City.
“The National Weather Service said on Sunday that bands of rain will arrive in our area late Monday; however, they will stay moderate throughout the day. The bands will increase in intensity until Tuesday afternoon when both wind and rain will become a steady state until early Wednesday morning. Ridgefield could expect 45 to 50 mph steady state winds with gusts between 50 & 60 mph.”
National Weather Sservice briefers noted that this storm will bring winds from the south if it stays on track. Historically, Connecticut sees greater tree and wire damage when winds come from the south rather than the north and northwest, as is the case with nor’easters and offshore tropical storms.
“We should expect power outages,” wrote Dick Aarons, Ridgefield’s emergency manager, on Facebook. “Eversource has already warned that its restoration times may be slower than usual because of pandemic precautions.
“Families [should] be prepared to shelter in place and to have food, water and medications on hand for family and pets,” Aarons added. “Ridgefield Office of Emergency Management (OEM) has advised all Ridgefielders to stock three-to-five days of emergency supplies at all times in preparation for weather or other emergencies. Be sure your information at CTAlert is up to date and watch for additional updates.”
Aarons further advises businesses and residents to remove or stabilize tents and secure outdoor furniture and any unanchored equipment that could become airborne in strong winds.
He also said that town residents should inspect and fuel-up household generators.
“Group shelters will only be opened in Connecticut as a last resort for this storm, or any other major event until the pandemic ends,” Aarons wrote in a Facebook post. “Please think about checking on and helping your neighbors.”
Hearst Connecticut Media reporter Peter Yankowski contributed to this story.