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Atlantic City emergency managers prepared for possible evacuation of coast

Hurricane Irene will impact the New Jersey coast Saturday through Sunday night during a new moon and astronomical high tide.
Hurricane Irene will impact the New Jersey coast Saturday through Sunday night during a new moon and astronomical high tide.
The National Weather Service Office

Hurricane Irene is a dangerous storm that’s going to be knocking on our backdoor. Do not wait to prepare.’ -Vince Jones, director of emergency preparedness Atlantic County.

By VIRGINIA McCABE

Hurricane Irene is going to impact the entire New Jersey coast and inland areas, according to Vince Jones, director of emergency preparedness. Preparations are in place to activate a rolling evacuation plan from Cape May through Atlantic County, if the storm stays on its current path and the danger mounts.

A conference call between the National Weather Service, Governor Christie’s emergency operations and local emergency managers delivered no good news today. No steering currents are going to save the Jersey coast. Even if Irene stays 50 miles offshore, the rain will cause extreme flooding in the area. Wind damage could be severe.

“The wind field for this storm extends out 200 miles,” said Jones. “This storm is going to hit us Saturday and run through Sunday night. We also have a new moon that will give us astronomical tides.”

The unflappable Jones said that residents should start their preparations today, without hesitation.

“Do not wait,” he said. “This storm is not going to pass us by.” Several computer models have the storm coming right over us or 50 miles off the coast. The size of the hurricane is 200 miles in diameter.”

Jones said everyone in emergency management is prepared but success depends on people listening to the warning and taking action.

“We have a plan for the entire coastal evacuation,” said Jones. “We have plans to move people, patients, medical people and shelter plans are in place. We also have a county wide animal rescue plan as well as suffering prolonged power outages.”

People who remain behind during a storm should be advised that rescue personnel may not be able to get to them at the height of the storm. If you are in a low laying area, you could be in extreme danger.

Residents should stay tuned to WOND 1400 AM, and NBC-TV 40 for up to the minute news on the hurricane and any plans for evacuation.

The Press of Atlantic City website also provides breaking news for the area at:
www.pressofatlanticcity.com

For information on how to prepare for a hurricane, visit:
www.aclink.org

Know your coast evacuation routes and monitor radio and television

Coastal evacuation routes map:
http://www.aclink.org/oep/mainpages/evac.asp

1.Make sure you get vital medications ahead of time.
2.People with farm animals are advised to tag their animals with their address.
3.Get fresh batteries for your radio so you can stay in contact during the storm if the radio towers do not blow out.
4.Obtain flashlights and Coleman lanterns to have a light source. Check the batteries and have back up batteries.

For information on how to prepare for a hurricane, visit:
www.aclink.org

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