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August 26, 2011

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Protect Your Electronics During the Storm 

(From Mac Business Solutions)


Whenever severe whether affects your local area it is important to shut down and unplug any electronic equipment that is not being used. Storms strain local power grids and cause a higher level of fluctuation in the quality of power that reaches your home or place of business. Surge protectors are only capable of handling so much and leaving them to secure your equipment will wear them out faster, requiring them to be replaced sooner. Besides power connections it is also best to unplug any ethernet or coaxial cables that are not being used. Any outside connections can be the subject of a lightning strike or surge.

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County Executive Declares State of Emergency  

for Anne Arundel County

Residents in flood-prone areas advised to evacuate

Annapolis, MD (August 26, 2011) - County Executive John R. Leopold has declared a State of Emergency in anticipation of Hurricane Irene and is advising residents in the flood plain to evacuate.

We are expecting this storm to cause significant damage, including downed trees, damaged structures and flooding, County Executive Leopold said. While protecting property is important and should be done throughout today, safety is the highest priority. If you live in the flood plain, it would be a good idea to evacuate to higher ground until conditions improve and it is safe to return to your home.

Mandatory evacuations can only be issued by the Governor. However, the County is urging residents of low-lying areas to seek higher ground starting Saturday morning. The attached map shows the communities that are located in the flood plain. (click here to see map). A phone message was sent to 10,000 people at 11:30 a.m. making them aware of shelter options.

The National Hurricane Center is forecasting that Hurricane Irene, presently located 420 miles Southwest of Cape Hatteras, NC, will move along the Delmarva coastline Saturday afternoon. Hurricane Irene is now a Category 2 hurricane with winds of 110 miles per hour and is expected to hold its intensity over the next 24 to 48 hours.

The Governor has declared a State of Emergency for Maryland and various jurisdictions are moving persons out of vulnerable flooding areas. Anne Arundel County is encouraging residents in low-lying and coastal areas to relocate to higher ground.

A shelter will be open on Saturday at 4 p.m. at Annapolis High School, 2700 Riva Road, Annapolis, MD, 21401. 
Domestic pets will be welcomed. Please bring your pets' food, medication, and vaccination records. Please remember all necessary supplies such as medications, sleeping bag and pillow, baby and elderly essentials, cash, and important documents.

Prior to evacuating your home please secure all objects outside your home to minimize damage.

One good way to stay updated is to "like" Facebook pages listed at, including the Office of Emergency Management. You can also subscribe to an RSS feed to receive updates on your smart phone.

Here are some useful tips for citizens to prepare: 

  • Have a plan to shelter in place for 72 hours or evacuate.
  • Update your supply kit with water (gallon per person per day), non-perishable food, fresh batteries and flashlight, radio, medications, and special need supplies for babies, elderly, and pets.
  • Fill your gas tanks in vehicles.
  • Fill all prescriptions.
  • Have cash available.
  • Bring in all outdoor furniture, decorations, garbage cans and anything else that is not tied down.
  • Ensure your generator is safely accessible outside your home; a bicycle lock can be placed to secure your generator.
  • Secure your home by closing shutters, and securing outdoor objects or bringing them inside.
  • In a power outage, turn the refrigerator thermostat to its coldest setting and keep its doors closed.
  • Turn off propane tanks.
  • Reinforce your garage doors; if wind enters a garage, it can cause dangerous and expensive structural damage.  
  • Ensure a supply of water for sanitary purposes such as cleaning and flushing toilets. Sanitize and fill the bathtub and other large containers with water.

Additional preparedness information can be obtained at or

For all emergencies, information will be released on local TV stations (WBAL TV (NBC), WMAR TV (ABC), WJZ TV (CBS), WBFF TV (FOX), radio stations (WNAV 1430 AM, WYRE 810 AM, WYPR88.1 FM, El Zol 99.1 FM, WFSI 107.9 FM, WBAL 1090 AM), and Anne Arundel Countys Community TV station Channel 98.

For information or non-emergency (life safety) help calls please call 410-222-0600. 

  Hurricane Irene may bring very strong winds
and high tides

Prepare now so you can minimize any damage.

What to do: 

  • Clear your gutters and downspouts.  
  • Secure loose items in your yard. (Many times floating debris causes as much damage, to you or your neighbors, as the water itself.)
  • If you are in low lying areas, make room to store valuables at higher elevation in the event of flooding. Sometimes a U-haul truck is a great idea.
  • If you fear flooding, sandbags and rolls of plastic are good items to have handy to minimize water infiltration.
  • Have abundant supply of water, and candles in case you lose power.
  • Have working flashlights with extra batteries.
  • Have extra ice available and a cooler to maintain frozen foods.
  • Do not run generators without proper ventilation.
  • Check to make sure your sump pump is operating properly. Consider installing a 12-volt battery back-up system.
  • Check and clean exterior drains in basement stairwells.
  • Top off your vehicle's gas tank.
  • Keep your cell phone charged up.
  • Have cash on hand as ATMs may be without power. Make sure to have small bills too.

If you have a boat and are not planning on taking it out of the water, remove all canvas, sails, and anything else that could be a problem with high winds. Add chafe protection to dock lines. Make sure to have extra long dock lines as they will need to be adjusted with the storm surge. If it's on a lift you may want to consider other options as the lift may not be high enough.  


See the hurricane preparedness page on our website for more information.