As I write this, powerful Hurricane Earl is spinning in the Atlantic Ocean with winds of more than 125 mph, just off the coast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. According to the experts at the National Hurricane Center, it’s expected to follow the coast up into Canada over the next several days. Although the storm remains offshore for now, hurricane watches and warnings have been issued for coastal areas along nearly the entire eastern seaboard. As a precaution, some towns have ordered evacuations to ensure the safety and security of their residents.
The Corps is also preparing to respond in the event of a disaster, and we are putting many of our emergency management personnel on alert and have pre-positioned some of our personal along the Atlantic Coast. Our role in any event like this is to assist the Department of Homeland Security and FEMA by coordinating and organizing public works and engineering-related support. Our response teams are available to support debris removal, purchase and delivery of essential commodities like water and ice, as well as to provide temporary emergency power, temporary housing, temporary roofing, infrastructure assessment, and support to urban search and rescue missions.
I pray that Earl stays its course and heads away from the coast. But should it decide to change course for the worse, our teams are standing by, ready to serve!
Preparedness is a shared responsibility. For tips on what you and your family can do to prepare for a hurricane, click here: http://www.ready.gov/america/beinformed/hurricanes.html