2011-08-25 / Front Page

Wide impacts across Putnam County from storm

Glynwood Dam in jeopardy
Eric Gross
Glynwood dam in jeopardy; Gilboa Dam upstate in jeopardy, too

Evacuations underway

Latest reports at 2:15 p.m. indicate that the Glynwood dam in western Putnam is in jeopardy and evacuations are underway. According to Sheriff Don Smith, the worst water situation in Putnam currently is on Route 301 in the Glynwood area, where many people  are being evacuated, the dam is in jeopardy and waters are raging. 

Farther upstate, the Gilboa Dam -- long a troubled structure on the Schoharie Reservoir -- is in danger of breaking, according to the latest reports. While some accounts earlier said it had already breached, the latest, best info is that evacuation sirens are going off because the dam may fail, or is close to failing. A mild earthquake struck there in recent days, and Gov. Cuomo visited the site Sunday morning, though he said at the time that the structure was in no jeopardy. The Department of Environmental Protection is sending additional people to the site to evaluate the situation.



35,000 lose power; Hayworth visits Operations Center

Fifty county officials and volunteers are manning the county's Emergency Operations Center in Carmel Saturday night where they will remain throughout the day Sunday and possibly into Monday depending if emergency services are needed.

More than two double the size of the Sheriff's Department staff are working throughout the storm while the Putnam 911 Dispatch Center has compliment of six dispatchers instead of the normal three.

County Executive Paul Eldridge ordered the opening of a shelter at the Putnam Valley Senior Center as well as the evacuation of several homes along Hudson River Lane in the Manitou section of Philipstown.

Officials are fearful at high tide Sunday around 11 am, a storm surge will flood low lying areas of both Garrison and Cold Spring.

NYSEG has employed crews from as far away as Ohio, Indiana, Michigan and Kansas to assist with wide spread expected power outages.

The EOC staff received a surprise Saturday evening when Congresswoman Nan Hayworth stopped by.

Hayworth told the Courier her reason for the visit on a Saturday evening was simple: "I want to learn what's going on at emergency centers throughout my district so if I can be of use or am called upon, I will have a better perspective as to what our communities in the Hudson Valley are doing."

Earlier story, Saturday afternoon:
A state of emergency has been declared for Putnam County in the wake of the arrival of Hurricane Irene.

County Executive Paul Eldridge issued the declaration Saturday afternoon after conferring with Commissioner of Emergency Services Robert McMahon.

Eldridge said due to the "expected hurricane force winds and torrential downpours flooding roads, knocking down trees and disrupting electric service later Saturday and Sunday, it is in the best interest of the public to stay at home and venture out of doors only in the case of an emergency."

The county's Emergency Operations Center has opened at the Bureau of Emergency Services and will be manned around the clock until the storm subsides.

Local fire stations and ambulance headquarters countywide will also be open for shelter in the event flooding forces the evacuation of individuals from their homes.

Earlier advice on preparing for a hurricane:
The hurricane/coastal storm season in New York State began on June 1 and runs through November 30. Although it is premature to predict the actual path of Hurricane Irene, residents here in Putnam County, need to begin taking steps to prepare themselves and their families for this storm.
Past history reveals that the entire state, from Montauk to Buffalo, is vulnerable to the effect of hurricanes in Atlantic coastal areas and may experience extensive flooding if a storm moves inland.
Residents are urged to be prepared to be without electricity and have food and medical supplies in house to last for several days.
Evacuation plans are typically in place for coastal areas and we are not anticipating evacuations will be necessary for the residents in Putnam County. Listed below are some steps that you should begin to take now:
·       Make sure that you have enough non-perishable food and water supplies on hand.
·       Have at least a week’s supply of medications on hand.
·       Make sure you have working flashlights and a battery operated radio.
·       Stay tuned to your local radio station for weather updates and emergency information.
·       Obtain and store materials, such as plywood, necessary to properly secure your home if necessary.
·       Clear loose and clogged rain gutters and downspouts.
·       Secure lawn furniture and any loose objects in your yard.
·       Review your insurance policy.
·       Know the hurricane risks in your area. Learn the storm surge history and elevation of your area.
·       Make plans now on what to do with your pets should you be required to evacuate your home. Public health regulations do not allow pets in public shelters, nor do most hotels/motels allow them. Contact your local emergency management office to inquire if sheltering plans include pets. Always plan in advance for shelter alternatives that work for you and your pets.


Return to top

Click here for digital edition
2011-08-25 digital edition

Weekly Quotation

‘No winter lasts forever; no spring skips its turn.’ ~Hal Borland