Friday, March 28, 2014

Flood potential for this weekend

Good afternoon After wavering on track and intensity, the National Weather Service (NWS) and other forecast services are mostly in agreement about this coming weekend. The flood watch headlines have been posted, and I will not be surprised if we see flood warnings (both general and for poor drainage areas) beginning tomorrow evening. The storm will track into the Mid-Atlantic region Saturday night, so there is still time for change, but here is the latest forecast: Rain - A slow moving storm will begin tomorrow afternoon, increase in intensity during the evening and become heavy during the overnight. 2+ inches of rain is expected during the overnight period alone (with another combined inch or so before and after the heaviest downpours). The latest projections are for rain to continue through most of the day on Sunday - perhaps not completely ending until Monday. Our area should see all rain - not snow. Snow pack - Although valley locations have little snow remaining on the ground, mountainous areas still have a few inches of liquid equivalent left in the snowpack in those areas. Frost - While the top few inches of soil may be muddy, there is still frost extending well into the ground. This will affect the ability of the soil to accept much rain - most will result in run-off. Ice Jam - Again, there is a wide variety in the County of free flowing streams and those slower moving bodies of water with considerable ice remaining. As run-off from the storm flows into ice laden streams, expect remaining ice to break up, and potentially back up - ice jam flooding can develop very rapidly. Reservoirs - After weeks of releases, the Ashokan is at 84% and the Rondout is just under 90%. Flood potential - Poor drainage areas will be the first to feel the effects of the storm, but the factors above all indicate we MAY face widespread issues with flooding during the overnight on Saturday through perhaps Monday (depending on how quickly the storm moves away). Please monitor conditions throughout the weekend as conditions change. If you need assistance from this office, please call. Art

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

High Band Paging for Fire Departments

As a follow up to the information provided in this month's first alarms regarding VHF high band paging for fire departments, I wanted to get the word out that yesterday we received FCC approval for an expanded number of pagers on frequency 155.220. Information regarding the implementation of this program (including the sunset of 33.48 paging) will be forthcoming within the next week. At this point I simply wanted to make you aware of the FCC's approval so that any imminent pager purchases could be made with an eye toward the migration to the new frequency. Tone configurations will not change, ie the same tone assigned to your department on 33.48 will be used for 155.220. More details will follow.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Flood Safety Week 2014

March 16-22 is Flood Safety Week. Since Ulster County has experienced the devastating effects of flooding on many occasions, please take a few monents to familiarize yourself with flood preparedness tips. Information can be found on our web site and at

Annual DEC burn ban

The annual NYS Department of Environmental Conservation burn ban is now in effect until May 15, 2014. Outdoor burning of brush and woody debris is prohibited during this period. For the rules and regulations regulating outdoor burning, please see

Friday, March 14, 2014

Fire Police Course

The Fire Police Course scheduled to begin tomorrow in Clintondale has been postponed until further notice.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Fire Police Course

There will be a 21 hour fire police course given at the Clintondale firehouse on March 15 and 22 (all day sessions starting at 9 AM) and concluding on March 24 with a class beginning at 7 PM. This is an open enrollment offering.

Saturday, March 08, 2014

Change your clocks, change your batteries

Tonight, as your set your clocks ahead an hour, change the batteries in your smoke detectors.

Monday, March 03, 2014

Severe Weather Preparedness Week 2014

March 2-8 2014 is Severe Weather Preparedness Week. Please check out our tips and links sections to be better prepared for emergency situations.