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The Post  
 
Hurricane Sandy “Frankenstorm” Philadelphia strengthens; Evacuations Closures Emergency PA NJ DE
 
  by: iradioal - Philadelphia, PA
started: 10/29/12 4:45 pm | updated: 10/29/12 10:26 pm
 
Hurricane Sandy is still a Category 1 Hurricane but is strengthening on Monday off the coast about 60 miles from New Jersey. The latest update has it's maximum sustained winds at 90 mph. It has made it's westerly left hook and it heading back towards the coast. Currently the forecast track has it making landfall somewhere near Atlantic City and Cape May around 6pm. This storm is massive with tropical storm force winds spread out over hundreds of miles and moving slowly, so no matter where it lands, everyone will be affected over a long period of time.

The center of the storm is expected to pass over the Philadelphia area overnight. Monday into Tuesday will be the worst of it. The heaviest rain and strongest winds will occur between 4pm Monday and 6am Tuesday. We could still see lingering showers into Wednesday.

Mayor Nutter enacted a State of Emergency for Philadelphia starting Sunday at 5 a.m. and lasting until 5 p.m. Tuesday. All city offices are closed today and on Tuesday, and Nutter encourages everyone to stay home and off the roads. Please keep the roads clear for emergency responders. Three emergency shelters will be open. Those are located at West Philadelphia High School, Roxborough High School and Fels High School. He again urged everyone who lives in a flood prone area to leave immediately and find friends, family, or a shelter to stay at for the duration of the storm.

Philadelphia School District and Archdiocesan Schools will be closed again on Tuesday.

SEPTA is shutdown all day today. The SEPTA shutdown includes all types of travel includes Regional Rail, the Market-Frankford Line, the Broad Street Line, city and suburban bus and trolley routes, and the Norristown High Speed Line. SEPTA service will also be suspended on Tuesday morning. They will start to assess the system in the morning and may or may not be able to restore service by the afternoon.

The PPA has announced that there will be Free Parking in Philadelphia through Wednesday morning at all city meters. Kiosks have also been disabled and wrapped in plastic for their protection. You still have to park in a legal spot, you will be ticketed/towed for those violations (blocking handicap, intersection, fire hydrant, etc.).

The Philadelphia International Airport is closed. All arrivals and departures are canceled. Most airlines are waiving change fees to reschedule you
Call your airline or check phl.org for the status of your flight. Amtrak is also canceling trains along the Northeast Corridor. You can find information on their cancellations at amtrak.com/alerts.

If you need anything during the storm in Philadelphia use the 311 system. Ask questions, report down trees and wires, clogged drains, etc. Leave 911 for emergency fire, police, and ambulance. All non-emergency calls should be sent to 311:
Twitter: @philly311 E-mail: philly311@phila.gov Phone: 311 Web: http://www.phila.gov/311/

PennDOT has reduced the speed limit on Philadelphia area highways to 45 mph starting at 10 am Monday morning. They also restricted various vehicles including oversize, empty tractor trailers, motorcycles, passenger vehicle trailers, and RVs from traveling on highways. These restrictions will be extended to other parts of the state as the day goes on. You can find PennDOT updates at www.dot.state.pa.us

Gov. Corbett announced they will be closing major roads around Philadelphia including 476, 76, 676 and 95; and city will close route 1. from 7 p.m to 2 a.m. The DRPA bridges will also be closed until 2 a.m. Tuesday morning.

Truck traffic is banned on DRPA bridges over the Delaware River starting at 2 pm this afternoon due to high winds. This also includes motorcycles, campers, and buses. The DRPA bridges include the Commodore Barry, Walt Whitman, Ben Franklin and Betsy Ross.

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett has already issued a State of Disaster Emergency in Pennsylvania ahead of the storm. PECO has upped their staff by hundreds getting ready deal with massive power outages caused by high winds and falling trees/branches. PPL, PSE&G, and Atlantic Electric have also brought in extra crews from all around the country to deal with the potential power disaster. The Red Cross is readying supplies, packing up water, cots, food, etc. in the event they need to open shelters. They can care for 26,000 people.

All area Malls will be CLOSED on Monday. Both in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. You can't use the rainy day as shopping day, stay home.

Wawa has announced that it will be closing stores in NJ, PA, DE, and MD tonight starting at 5 pm. For a list of closed stores: Wawa Statement

President Obama has already signed the State of Emergency declarations for Pennsylvania and New Jersey. The declarations will allow officials in each state to request federal funding and other assistance for actions taken in advance of the huge storm. FEMA is also readying their aid. They've pre-classified Philadelphia as a Category 1 Hurricane zone.

New Jersey is bracing for a direct hit from Hurricane Sandy. Record flooding is possible with a pending storm surge combined with the full moon tonight, heavy rains, and a 8 pm high tide during landfall. Heavy surf and high winds will also batter the coast line. Widespread flooding is occurring at shore towns with most of them under water already. Much of Atlantic City is under water at this time with waves ripping away parts of the boardwalk. A storm surge of 4-8 feet is expected and wave heights of up to 20ft are already making their way on shore.

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie enacted a State of Emergency over the weekend with mandatory evacuations for all barrier islands from Sandy Hook to Cape May, however many people ignored the evacuation orders and have chosen to ride out the storm. All state offices are closed today, with only essential employees required to report. New Jersey Transit, PATH, and PATCO public transit is also shutdown today.

He admonished those in Atlantic City and others on the barrier islands for not evacuating. He called out the Mayor of AC for encouraging residents to use a shelter in AC instead of evacuating. Brigantine also ordered people to stop evacuating earlier Monday. Now those cities are under water. Christie said that rescue operations will have to cease for the night. Those who chose to stay will have to hunker down and wait until the morning.

In Delaware, there had been a partial State of Emergency while coastal areas and flood prone areas have been mandatory evacuating. The City of Wilmington has declared a State of Emergency and all city offices will be closed. Governor Jack Markell has ordered “Level Two” driving restrictions in the state of Delaware beginning at 5 a.m. on Monday. That means that only essential personnel necessary to maintain the core functions of the government, health, and safety are allowed out on the roads. A first offense is $115 fine.

We can all expect 4-8 and up to 10 inches of rain with sustained winds over 50 miles an hour and up to 75 mph in some places and embedded thunderstorms. The most important thing to remember, now that the storm is here, Stay at home on Monday. Do not venture out unless it is an emergency. Think of the risk emergency responders are putting themselves in if you get yourself in trouble while venturing out.

 
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(3) responses

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 by: iradioal - Philadelphia, PA | responded: 10/29 5:10 pm
 
Fallen tree blocking road in Huntingdon Valley, PA


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 by: iradioal - Philadelphia, PA | responded: 10/29 6:37 pm
 
24th Street, Surf City, Long Beach Island, NJ


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 by: iradioal - Philadelphia, PA | responded: 10/29 6:39 pm
 
Ron Jon Surf Shop, Long Beach Blvd, Ship Bottom, NJ

 

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