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Hampton Roads cities prepare for impact of Hurricane Isaias

Isaias
Posted at 10:53 AM, Jul 31, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-03 10:54:35-04

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. - Cities around Hampton Roads are preparing for Hurricane Isaias as the storm sweeps through the Bahamas and up the East Coast.

Isaias is forecast to reach coastal North Carolina and the Hampton Roads area by Monday or Tuesday.

Hampton Roads residents are encouraged to Know Your Zone, stock emergency supply kits and stay informed.

Dominion Energy representatives said they have been monitoring the situation and have made preparations to respond to the potential outages. This week, Dominion Energy began planning to have the necessary personnel and resources in place before the storm arrives.

Dominion Energy and contract crews will begin repair and restoration operations as soon as it is safe to do so. As with all outage situations, it will give high priority to restoring service to critical public facilities such as water treatment plants, public safety operations, hospitals and important municipal facilities.

Portsmouth

The Portsmouth Office of Emergency Management has been watching this system since Monday, officials said. Preparations have begun to include initial shelter set-up (if needed), flood response and gear readiness checks, and community messaging to be prepared.

In the next 72 hours, the City will coordinate closely with the Virginia Department if Emergency Management to ensure timely evacuation and flooding mitigation is highlighted to reduce the chance of lost property and life, officials told News 3.

Newport News

Newport News officials are continuing to monitor Hurricane Isaias and residents are encouraged to follow weather reports, stay informed and make plans to keep themselves and their families safe. City crews have been working to prepare for the storm’s arrival and are taking the following steps.

  • Public Works Stormwater crews are inspecting the storm drain system and clearing debris as needed.
  • Generators for traffic lights, pump stations, city buildings, and water treatment facilities are being inspected and fueled.
  • Debris clearing equipment (e.g., chainsaws, excavators, front-end loaders, etc.) is ready.
  • Construction sites are being secured to prevent loose materials from becoming projectiles.

Norfolk

City crews are preparing for the storm and cleaning storm drains and ditches to ease potential flooding. In addition, extra crews are on standby to respond to downed trees due to the wind. Please ensure curbs, gutters and ditches on your property are clear of debris. Secure any loose items in your yard to prevent damage during the storm.

If you have trash or recycling scheduled for Tuesday, August 4, it will be collected as usual. Please ensure that all items are bagged before placed in waste bins. Bulk waste scheduled for Tuesday will be picked up on Saturday, August 8.

The City will open city garages so that residents can move their vehicles to higher ground. The following garages will be open beginning Monday, August 3 at 6:00 p.m. Residents are prohibited from parking in reserved spaces. Vehicles must be removed by 8:00 a.m. on Wednesday, August 5.

  • York Street Garage, 215 West York Street
  • Bank Street Garage, 420 Monticello Avenue
  • St. Paul’s Lot, 521 Wood Street

All Old Dominion University parking garages will open Monday, August 3 at 6:00 p.m. for Norfolk residents. Do not move or cross barricades. Vehicles must be removed by 8:00 a.m. Wednesday, August 5. At that time parking permit and meter payment requirements in campus parking facilities will resume as normal.
In anticipation of inclement weather, Lime scooters will be temporarily out of service on Tuesday, August 4.

Based on the predicted timing of the storm, the City of Norfolk plans to declare a local emergency at midnight tonight.

Suffolk

The City of Suffolk has been monitoring and coordinating in advance of the storm in order to address potential staffing levels, preparing and fueling of equipment and other resources, focusing on areas known to have drainage issues previously, securing of facilities, and the potential need to activate Emergency Shelters, including staffing and security.

Virginia Beach

The City of Virginia Beach is monitoring a weather system that could bring heavy rain, rough surf, possible tidal flooding and hurricane-force winds to Virginia Beach, especially along the Chesapeake Bay and throughout Southside Hampton Roads.

According to a release, city officials have been working diligently the last few months on evacuation and shelter planning in the COVID environment should the need arise for either of those two scenarios.

City departments are making appropriate storm preparations to include checking storm drains and pump stations, inspecting and securing equipment, removing banners and flags at the Oceanfront, checking chainsaws, storm-related equipment and vehicles for preparedness and reviewing staffing to support emergency conditions.

The Virginia Beach Public Works Department has installed new “flip” warning signs in rural areas indicating ROADWAY SUBJECT TO FLOODING. Once water begins to rise onto the roads, the sign panels can be flipped to indicate HIGH WATER, ROAD CLOSED.

Virginia Beach Public Utilities is monitoring the storm’s progress, testing generators and securing their sites. The Operations Division is deploying bypass pumps and portable generators to support potential power outages, and the Engineering Division is securing all its construction sites and preparing to conduct post-storm damage assessment.

This story will be updated as we hear from cities around Hampton Roads.