Hurricane Irene update for Fort A.P. Hill

The Fort A.P. Hill Emergency Operations Center is closely monitoring the projected track of Hurricane Irene. You can follow the National Weather Service’s forecasts for A.P. Hill online at http://1.usa.gov/aCcLOM. Impact on Fort A.P. Hill’s operating status, services or activities, will be posted to the phone hotline at (804) 633-8600. The information will also be available on Fort A.P. Hill’s website at (https://fortaphill.wordpress.com), Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/FtAPHill) and Twitter http://twitter.com/fort_aphill). Any emergencies should be reported to Fort A.P. Hill’s Police at (804) 633-8911.

It is extremely important that directorates and tenant partners begin immediately to survey their areas of responsibility to ensure that all doors and windows can be secured, loose materials and equipment are securely stowed or anchored, validate emergency contact information (internal and external) and very personnel/sensitive item accountability. Ensure that the GSA vehicles under your control are moved to areas where they will not be subject to damaging winds and floods. These are all precautionary measures should the worst happen Fort A.P. Hill can rapidly and effectively respond to and mitigate adverse conditions.

Please prepare yourself and your families to be safe over the weekend.  Stay tuned to local media outlets to stay abreast of hazardous weather conditions and emergency managers’ instructions.

Important contact numbers

Fort A.P. Hill Weather Hotline: (804) 633-8600.
Fort A.P. Hill Police Desk:  (804) 633-8911
Caroline County Sheriff’s Office: (804) 633-5400
Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office: (540) 582-7115
Essex County Sheriff’s Office: (804) 443-3466
King George County Sheriff’s Office: (804) 775-2049

Local Alert notifications (after subscribing at no cost):

Caroline County Alert: https://www.carolinealert.com
* Be sure to check the Fort A.P. Hill Public Affairs category

King George Alert: https://www.kgalert.com

Spotsy Alert: https://www.spotsyalert.com

 

For updates regarding Hurricane Irene, visit:
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Conditions website
http://www.noaa.gov/

For Hurricane Readiness:

http://www.acsim.army.mil/readyarmy/Hurricane_Fact_Sheet.pdf

http://www.ready.gov/america/beinformed/hurricanes.html

http://www.fema.gov/

 

Emergency Preparedness for both Home and Office use
provided by Fort A.P. Hill EOC

Based on information derived from ReadyVirginia.gov and internal assessments the following is advised for every employee working at Fort A.P. Hill as well as family members at home:

Preparation is the key to successful survival during and after severe weather incidents.  Families are encouraged to visit the Ready Army website to obtain information on how to “Get a Kit, Make a Plan, and Be Informed” (http://www.acsim.army.mil/readyarmy/index.htm)

Electric, telephone (landline and wireless), internet, and water service disruption is a typical occurrence during severe weather.  It is imperative that Families keep emergency equipment and supplies readily accessible.  At night, keep a flashlight near you at all times.

 1. BEFORE THE STORM

Board-up and tape all windows. Secure loose items.

If you have a pool, leave it full and over-chlorinate the water.

Top off your car’s fuel tank (gas stations won’t work when the power is down).

            Water: Store as much water as possible. Bottled (plastic bottles) drinks, consider using empty plastic containers such as milk jugs, 2 liter soft drinks bottles, etc. Plan on using one gallon per day per person. Fill bathtubs, sinks, and trashcans lined with clean garbage bags with water for washing.

                        -Water purification tablets: They are inexpensive and available at most sporting goods stores and some drugstores. Follow the package directions. Usually one tablet is enough for one quart of water. (Double the dose for cloudy water).

2. STORE/TIE DOWN YOUR OUTDOOR ITEMS:

Place small boats, trailers, golf carts, picnic tables, benches and trash cans indoors, if possible.

Securely lash and stake any equipment left outdoors. If tables/benches are left outside, turn upside down before lashing.

Position equipment, remaining outside, in locations that will minimize damage. This can be accomplished by using wooded areas, heavier equipment, or buildings as windbreaks.

Secure swings and other moveable playground equipment.

 

3. SUPPLIES:

Recommended emergency supplies and equipment (at a minimum):

            Food:

Stock-pile; preferable nonperishable, needing little or no cooking; high nutrition type.  Some dietary foods are needed, if a diabetic person is sheltering plus extra supplies of any medicines needed.

            1. A heating source such as a propane camp stove, propane grill, Canned Heat. (DO NOT USE GASOLINE FUELED STOVES OR BURNERS). ***Open flames are never encouraged; however survival and comfort is based on the individual. If you utilize candles always ensure you have a non-flammable base and a wide area in which to utilize it that doesn’t have debris in the area that can catch fire. Never ever go to sleep with an uncontained open flame being lit!

            2. A manual can opener (if kit contains canned food).

            3. Identify and prepare additional items for any special needs persons\and place in a separate bag that stays with your emergency kit and properly identified.

            4. Water- at least three gallons per person for drinking and sanitation (recommendation is one gallon per person per day).

            5. Food that does not need electricity for storage or for preparation (canned and packaged dry goods).

            6. Battery-powered or hand crank radio and a weather alerting radio and extra batteries for both.

            7. Flashlight and extra batteries.

            8. Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities.

            9. Whistle to signal for help.

            10. Prescription medications, immunization records and eyewear.

            11. Dust masks to help filter contaminated air.

            12. Plastic sheeting (non-porous).

            13. Duct tape (Gorilla or 100 mph) to secure plastic sheeting covering window frames, doors and air filters.

            14. Moist towelettes (at least 100) in a sealed container for use in bathing and cleaning wounds.

            15. Garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation.

            16. Cell Phone (fully charged).

            17. Local maps.

            18. Copies of important family documents, such as insurance policies, identification and bank account records in a waterproof, portable container.

            19. Cash in small denominations or traveler’s checks and change.

            20. Sleeping bag or warm blanket for each person.

            21. Complete change of clothing, including a long-sleeved shirt, long pants, socks and

sturdy shoes.

            CHILDREN:

            1. Blankets.

            2. Pillows (if possible).

            3. Bath towels and wash cloths.

            4. Several changes of clothes.

            5. Coates and light jackets.

            6. Books, games, puzzles or other activities.

            INFANTS:

            1. Formula.

            2. Bottled water to mix with formula and to wash bottles.

            3. Bottles.

            4. Blankets (both emergency blankets and receiving blankets).

            5. Diapers – keep the diaper size current.

            6. Bath towels and wash cloths.

            7. Several changes of clothes (Burp cloths, bibs) etc.

            8. Binkies and toys.

            9. Cotton swabs.

            10. Diaper rash ointment.

            11. Pedialyte (used for prevention of dehydration in infants, children and elderly).

            PETS:

            1. Identification tags on collars.

            2. Sturdy leashes or carriers to transport pets safely (Carriers should be large enough for the pet to stand up, turn around and lie down).

            3. Towels or blankets.

            4. Current photos of you with your pets.

            5. Pet food.

            6. Drinking water and bowls.

            7. Litter/pan.

            8. Feeding schedules.

            9. Veterinarian records listing.

                        -Medications

                        -Medical conditions,

                        -Behavior problems

                        -Name and number of your veterinarian

            10. Pet beds.

            11. Pet toys.

            First aid kit containing the following items:

1. Band-Aids small, medium and large and additional adhesive bandages in a variety of sizes.
2. Gauze patch covers small, medium and large.

            3. Sterile dressings (to stop bleeding).

            4. Four pairs of Latex, or other sterile gloves (if you are allergic to Latex).

            5. Soap and antibiotic towelettes to disinfect.

            6. Antibiotic ointment to prevent infection.

            7. Burn ointment to prevent infection.

            8.  Eye wash solution to flush the eyes or as general decontaminant.

            9. Thermometer (Read more: Pandemic Flu & Other Health Threats).

            10. Prescription medications you take every day such as insulin, heart medicine and asthma inhalers.

            11. Prescribed medical supplies such as glucose and blood pressure monitoring equipment and supplies.

            12. Scissors and Tweezers.

            13. Tube of petroleum jelly or other lubricant.

            14. Aspirin or no aspirin pain reliever.

            15. Anti-diarrhea medication.

            16.  Antacid (for upset stomach) Laxative.

 

**You should periodically replace medicines to account for expiration dates.

If you decide to shelter at home (remain in your quarters) keep in mind that after most hurricanes, utilities such as water, sewer, electricity, phone and gas lines are out of service for days or weeks. Because of downed telephone lines, debris clogged roads and low water pressure; the fire department will not be able to respond effectively, if at all. Here are some of things you should do to prepare for the storm and its aftermath.

If at all possible; select a room suitable for the entire family (including pets) that has a bathroom, sink and tub within it or directly attached. The less windows and doors you have in your safe room the better off you are as glass presents cutting hazards along with door frames and floor and window trim present sealing hazards against outside contaminates.

            ***FACT:It could take time for help to arrive if businesses close, fallen trees block roads and power goes out in your area. You should have general supplies to support your household for at least three to five days.

4. DURING THE STORM:

Stay away from windows. The safest place in a house (without a basement) is in an interior room with no windows. Bathrooms or closets are often the safest place to be.

Avoid the EYE of the storm. When the eye of a hurricane passes overhead you may think the storm is over. The sun may come out and it may appear to be calm or a normal beautiful day; however, DO NOT GO OUTSIDE! This is the eye of the storm passing over, and hurricane or strong winds will resume shortly, but in the opposite direction.

5. PREPARATION FOR EVACUATION:

***FACT:PLAN in advance your evacuation and safety measures!

*** FACT: Accept that shelters will not be able to afford you all the comforts of home. They are geared for basic survival. Bring toys, games and books, etc. for your children.

Prepare for possible evacuation to shelters.  Unless otherwise notified, you should remain in your home and take all necessary steps to safeguard life and protect property.  Bring along your pre-assembled survival kit and to make your stay more comfortable. If power has gone off for any significant time, check food for possible spoilage.  Do not operate an emergency portable generator inside a garage or quarters.

Be alert to help prevent fires. Broken water mains and low water pressure constrain fire- fighting capabilities. Stay away from damaged or disaster areas.  Do not start the cleanup of your yard or around your quarters until it has been determined that it is safe to work outdoors- especially if any nearby trees are damaged. Report any damage or safety hazards to your insurance and local law enforcement department.

Ensure you have a FULL tank of gas before evacuating. Act immediately – in daylight if possible. DON’T GET MAROONED! Turn off main switch to circuit breaker for utilities (consider what appliances you want left on as long as possible, refrigerator, freezer, etc..)

            -Shut off main gas valves.

            -Turn off main water valves.

            -Lock your home securely.

6. WHAT TO DO WITH PETS:

In the event that residents with pets need to evacuate their homes contact and pre-coordinate with your local veterinary clinics for drop off and care if you cannot bring your pet with you.

Pet owners may have to supply a cage and subsistence/care items for their pets (food, litter and litter-box, medications, etc.) and will be required to remain in the emergency evacuation center co-located with the pet shelter.

7. WHAT TO DO AT THE SHELTER:

            -If you go to a shelter, check in at the registration desk as soon as you enter the building.

            -If you are able, volunteer to assist the shelter workers in any way possible.

            -Parents are responsible for the behavior of their children at all times. Please help them understand what is happening.

            -The shelter staff will be responsible for your health and well being. Follow all their directions.

8. LIGHTENING:

When you first see lightning or hear thunder, or receive notification activate your emergency plan. Now is the time to go to a designated building, area, or a vehicle. Lightning often precedes rain, so don’t wait for the rain to begin before suspending activities. Seek shelter in the following order.

If lightning is nearby when you are outside:

Find shelter in a substantial building or in a fully enclosed metal vehicle such as a car, truck or a van with the windows completely shut. If no building is available- avoid water, high ground, open spaces, all metal objects including electric wires, fences, machinery, motors, power tools, etc.

            -Get in a building with lightning protection. A building that is grounded (a building even with no lightning protection or grounding is better to be in then in an open exposed area).

            -If you have no choice and have to remain exposed; disperse everyone in the open area and stay down as low as possible. You should disperse 15 feet away from each other. Crouch down, put feet together. Place hands over ears to minimize hearing damage from thunder. Do not lie on the ground.

            -If after a lightening storm you have injured persons, remember that they do not carry an electrical charge and can be handled safely. Apply First Aid procedures to a lightning victim if you are qualified to do so. Call 911 or send for help immediately.

10. TORNADOES:

            -Tornado response is divided into two phases: tornado WATCH and tornado WARNING.

            -A tornado WATCH means that conditions are favorable to tornado development.  This is actually the most important phase, as it sets the stage for rapid and orderly movement to shelters by ensuring that all personnel are informed of the danger and reminded of the location of the nearest shelter.  It is during a tornado WATCH that building occupants ensure that everyone is notified and knows the actions to be taken in the event a WARNING is received.  A tornado WATCH may last for several hours and may or may not be followed by a tornado.  Although it may be inconvenient, the focus must be on reacting to a tornado until the WATCH is lifted.

            -A tornado WARNING means that a tornado is imminent.  It means take shelter and stay there until the all clear is given.

11. DRIVING:

Don’t drive unless you absolutely have to. If you must travel, drive cautiously and be alert to hazards such as debris, downed electrical wires, undermined roads and flooded areas. Be wary of driving in “shallow waters”. Light reflection may cause depth of water to be deceiving, and only a relatively light current will be enough to sweep your vehicle away.

Local authorities will officially advise through area operations centers and radio and news sources when specific communities should be evacuated as well as where you are to go, and which shelters will be opened and staffed.

12. AFTER THE STORM:
Stay tuned to your local radio or television station. They will keep you informed about the storm and when it has passed; however, REMAIN IN YOUR HOME UNTIL THE AUTHORITIES INFORM YOU IT IS SAFE TO GO OUT, AS DOWNED POWER LINES AND OTHER DANGEROUS DEBRIS MAY PRESENT A HAZARD TO YOU OR YOUR FAMILY.

            Security and preparation measures:

                        – Consolidate your emergency equipment and supplies.

                        – Fill all vehicles with fuel.

                        – Due to the potential for additional adverse weather; re-secure materials around your home that can be blown away (i.e., signs, mailboxes, garbage cans, barbecue grills, lawn furniture, etc).

                        – Check and re-secure windows, screens and shutters.

            Unless notified to evacuate, remain in your home.

                        – Stay indoors and keep your children with you.

                        – Stay away from windows.

                        – Use extreme caution when opening doors and windows.

                        – Extinguish all open flames.

                        – Do not handle electrical equipment when damp or wet.

About U.S. Army Garrison Fort A.P. Hill

This is the OFFICIAL Fort A.P. Hill WordPress blog. Views and opinions expressed here are those of the writers and do not reflect an official position of DOD, the Army or Fort A.P. Hill. Call the Public Affairs Office at (804) 633-8120 for more info.
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