Tropical Storm Henri expected arrival, city officials urge caution

With Tropical Storm Henri expected to impact the western mass region with rainfall ranging between 3-6 inches and 30-40 miles per hour winds Sunday through Monday morning, city officials are urging residents to prepare ahead and use caution.

“Potential impacts from this storm may include flash flooding, downed trees and power lines,” said Fire Chief Thomas Sammons, who along with other members of the city’s Emergency Management Team met on Friday morning to discuss the city’s plan. “We just want everyone to be stay safe so we’re asking the public to prepare ahead, get what you need and stay off the roads as much as possible.”

Also on Friday, Gov. Baker issued a statewide advisory, noting the storm’s potential to affect much of the Commonwealth with heavy rains and flooding.

As preparations are put into place for the coming storm event, Chief Sammons shared safety tips for the public to keep in mind.

“Home generators should not be connected to power within the residence as it can result in backfeeding, which is causing electrical power to flow from its normal direction, resulting in possible electrocution,” Sammons said. “Also, as always, please stay away from downed power lines as contact can result in significant injury or death.”

To report a down wire, please call Eversource at 877-659-8636.

While crews will be dispatched across the city, residents are also asked to be mindful of nearby catch basins that may need clearing.

 

Here are some other tips from the state’s website on preparing for before and after a storm event:

  • Ensure your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are working and have fresh batteries.
  • Know where your electricity, gas, and water switches and valves are located and how to shut them off.

Flooding hazards

  • Elevate your furnace, water heater, and electric panel to higher floors if they may be at risk during a flood.
  • Clear clogged rain gutters to allow water to flow away from your home.
  • Elevate items stored in the basement to minimize damage from basement flooding.
  • If you have a basement or lower level of your property prone to flooding, buy and install sump pumps with back-up power. If you already have a sump pump, check regularly to make sure it is functioning properly.
  • Consider installing check valves in sewer traps to prevent floodwater from backing up into the drains in your home.

 

Wind hazards

  • Remove dead or rotting trees and branches around your home.
  • If you don’t have storm shutters, make temporary plywood covers for windows and glass doors and store them in a readily accessible place.

 

City officials will continue to monitor and track the storm. Emergency updates are shared through the city’s notification system, CodeRED. To sign up, please click here: https://public.coderedweb.com/CNE/en-US/8E853AC9FDEB

For more information, please visit mass.gov/MEMA.