As evidenced from the last two major storms, Hurricane Irene and the early snowfall in October, the Somers Town Boards Emergency Plan needs work, if one exists at all. Activation plans, the opening of the shelter, the distribution of fresh water and dry ice should be announced in advance of the storm, rather than attempting to contact residents by phone or email when the power lines are down. Most of the residents have access to public radio either with a portable or car radio and this should be the most effective way to get the word out. Management of the shelter needs to be consistent with trained supervision; i.e. Red Cross personnel or emergency services volunteers.
For-warned and For-armed makes all the difference in an emergency. Publishing the Town Plan before the next storm hits, is in order. As mentioned in a recent article in the Journal News, climatologist are calling for more frequent and severe storms in the near future due to climatic changes. The residents need to know now what to do in case they lose power and NYSEG needs to be more responsive to the needs of the community.
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