STAMFORD, Conn. -- Although this year's hurricane season is predicted to be less severe than normal, Stamford is preparing for the worst.
City officials, community agencies and first responders held a tabletop exercise at the Stamford Government Center on Tuesday morning to practice dealing with hurricanes.
"The message that we send out there is be prepared, make a kit and be prepared to respond to any type of event that should occur, especially during hurricane season," said Ted Jankowski, Stamford's director of public safety, health and welfare.
Last week was National Hurricane Preparedness Week, and hurricane season began Monday and runs through Nov. 30.
Jankowski said residents take warnings from city officials seriously when it comes to heeding advice during hurricanes or other natural disasters.
"I always give credit to the residents because they do listen to us," Jankowski said.
Hurricanes and tropical storms can put communities at risk of catastrophic damage from storm surges, flooding, high winds, and tornadoes. Stamford has been hit in recent years, with Irene in 2011 and Sandy in 2012.
“Over the past few years, Stamford has experienced firsthand how hurricanes can affect our coastline and entire city. Being aware and taking steps to prepare can reduce the impact of these storms on the community. National Hurricane Preparedness Week is an excellent reminder to take precaution,” said Mayor David Martin.
The city is recommending that residents review their emergency plans in order to keep them, their families and neighbors safe. Jankowski is encouraging all Stamford residents and visitors to prepare for hurricane season by developing an emergency plan, creating an emergency supply kit and developing a family communications plan to ensure loved ones can find one another before and after a severe storm.
Emergency Management Director Capt. Thomas Lombardo said it's difficult to predict how strong a hurricane or tropical storm will be or where it will hit.
"Five days before we are not really dealing with a lot of really, really good information. It's fuzzy," he said. "When you watch hurricanes moving up the coast, they move in funny ways, they can restructure, they can move one spot to another, they can lose force. We find on the third day out we are getting better information."
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