Coast Guard discusses Tropical Storm Michael preparations in Portsmouth

Posted at 1:59 PM, Oct 11, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-11 13:59:31-04

PORTSMOUTH, Va. – The U.S. Coast Guard Sector Hampton Roads will discuss preparations the service is taking and how the public can be better prepared for Tropical Storm Michael’s impact on the area.

As Michael moves into the Hampton Roads area, there are risks for heavy rainfall (4-to-6 inches) through the evening and into early Friday morning. Michael will bring wind gusts of 50 mph or greater as well as a flash flood risk.

The Coast Guard’s ability to conduct rescues may be diminished or non-existent leading up to, during and following the storm. Mariners and those living and working near waterways must be prepared, stay informed and heed storm warnings. A significant impact could also affect port operations.

All boaters and members of the public should monitor the progress and strength of the storm through local television, radio and internet as Tropical Storm Michael approaches. Boaters can monitor its progress and be apprised of small craft advisories and warnings by monitoring VHF marine radio channel 16.

Adverse weather effects generated by a tropical storm can cover an area hundreds of miles wide. Recreational boaters and commercial vessels outside of the direct path of the storm are advised to be aware of weather conditions and to take appropriate precautions to stay safe.

The Coast Guard is warning the public of these important safety messages:

  • Stay off the water. The Coast Guard’s search and rescue capabilities degrade as storm conditions strengthen. This means help could be delayed. Boaters should heed weather watches, warnings, and small craft advisories.
  • Be prepared. Owners of large boats are urged to move their vessels to inland marinas where they will be less vulnerable to breaking free of their moorings or to sustaining damage. Trailerable boats should be pulled from the water and stored in a place that is not prone to flooding. Those who are leaving their boats in the water are reminded to remove EPIRBs and to secure life rings, life jackets, and small boats. These items, if not properly secured, can break free and require valuable search and rescue resources be diverted to ensure people are not in distress..
  • Stay informed. The public should monitor the progress and strength of the storm through local television, radio, and the Internet. Boaters can monitor its progress on VHF radio channel 16. Information can also be obtained on small craft advisories and warnings on VHF radio channel 16.

For information on hurricane status, please visit the National Hurricane Center’s webpage.