A major storm blowing through the area has prompted Governor Ned Lamont to activate the state’s emergency monitoring protocols starting at 7 am on Friday. The storm, which started with moderate rainfall on Thursday night is expected to last through Saturday morning.
According to meteorologists, the rainfall will turn into thunderstorms with strong winds over the course of Friday and could result in downed trees and power outages as well as coastal flooding. Plummeting temperatures over the weekend means that rainfall could turn to ice in some spots.
“We’ve been in regular contact with the utility companies, which have brought in hundreds of out-of-state crews on this holiday weekend in anticipation of outages,” said the governor in a statement on Thursday night. “Considering that temperatures will sharply drop on Friday night, I strongly urge everyone to make preparations in case you lose power as a result of the storm. Shelters are open across the state and anyone can call 2-1-1 to get connected to the nearest available location.”
Under the enhanced monitoring conditions, the state’s Emergency Operations Center brings in additional staff from the Connecticut Department of Emergency Management and Homeland Security (DEMHS). According to the governor’s office, “officials from several state agencies, including the Department of Transportation, Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, Department of Public Health, Connecticut State Police, and the Connecticut National Guard, as well as the utilities, the Red Cross, and United Way 2-1-1 will be available on a virtual emergency operations center link to communicate instantly if needed.”
Additionally, crews from the Department of Transportation have been placed on stand-by in case there is need for snow removal or road treatments to prevent ice.
Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection Commissioner James Rovella, meanwhile, waived a truck ban on the Merrit and Wilbur Ross Parkways to allow utility vehicles to travel those roads to respond to calls from 8 pm on Thursday to Noon on Sunday.
Residents should be sure to check on elderly neighbors who may need assistance in case of outages or severe cold. DEMHS also says you should secure any outdoor furniture or holiday decorations and stay indoors if possible during the worst of the storm.