Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Fire training announcement

There will be a one day (all day) Firefighter Safety and Survival class at the Mt Marion Fire Department on Saturday, February 13 starting at 8 AM. The Firefighter Assist and Search Team class will follow and is scheduled to start on February 28, 2013, also at Mt. Marion.  E-mail training requests to Charlie Mutz at ccucbf56@aol.com

Update to weather advisory

Good afternoon

This morning I advised our human needs community that the current cold snap would not quite reach the threshold criteria established with the National Weather Service (see e-mail below). NWS Albany has just lowered their three day averages slightly:

Mean temperature at Albany (these are temperatures only, wind chill values will be lower). The temperatures at Poughkeepsie are slightly warner (3-6 degrees warner each period):

Tues - Thurs: mean temp 12 degrees F
Wed - Fri: 9 (Thursday into Thursday night is expected to be THE coldest point in this event.)
Thurs - Sat: 12
Fri - Sun: 14
Sat - Mon: 18
Sun - Tues: 23

The second or third week of January is historically the coldest week of the year as measured in Albany, and these levels are usually reached a couple of times per year. The Weather Service seems to be down playing the snow event somewhat for the late week time frame. We will still see some accumulation, but the heaviest snow will be associated with Lake effect squalls.

Please see the tips below, and use extreme caution when working outside. If you know of homeless people within your community, or someone who does not have adequate heat, please utilize the existing human needs / social service network to get these people into the system and out of the cold. If there are large scale outages of electric or natural gas, we will work with these agencies to open additional sheltering facilities.

The Wind Chill Advisory remains in effect for tonight into tomorrow for western Ulster County.

Wind Chill Advisory

Good morning

Several years ago the emergency management community and the National Weather Service Office in Albany agreed on an advisory protocol for unusually cold temperatures. If there are three consecutive days of average temperatures of 10 degrees or less (as measured at Albany) there would be conference calls between the NWS and local OEMs. While the current cold spell does not meet that criteria, it is a good opportunity to remind everyone of some of the hazards associated with extreme cold:

Frostbite and hypothermia (in both humans and animals) is a real threat. Cover exposed areas of the body to conserve heat.

Avoid overexertion - cold weather puts an increased strain on the heart.

Use caution with auxiliary heat sources. During periods of very cold weather the incidence of fires and carbon monoxide calls rise.

Pipes will freeze quickly. To prevent this, insulate the pipes and if necessary run a trickle of water through a faucet.

Weak car batteries may fail to start a vehicle. If you are stranded in your vehicle in blowing snow conditions., stay with the vehicle unless assistance is clearly visible.

A wind chill advisory is in effect for Western Ulster County from 7 PM this evening until noon on Wednesday. Wind chill readings (a combination of temperature and wind) are expected to be from -15 to -25 during this period.