Arlington County is urging residents to stay put until the heavy rain and wind of Hurricane Sandy blows through the area over the next day or so.
“Arlington emergency managers urge everyone to stay where you are,” the county said in a media alert this morning. “High winds and the danger of falling trees will present an extremely unsafe environment. Get yourself to a safe place and stay there.”
With widespread damage to trees expected during the storm, the county is asking residents to call 703-228-6525 to report downed trees. Only in the event of a life-threatening emergency should residents call 9-1-1, the county said.
For non-emergency assistance, residents can call the non-emergency police and fire line at 703-558-2222. Requests for storm aid can be made by calling the Arlington Department of Human Services at 703-228-1300 or the regional aid hotline at 2-1-1.
Sandy is expected to drop up to 5-10 inches of rain on the D.C. area and pack damaging wind gusts of 70-80 miles per hour. From the National Weather Service:
AT 11 AM EDT… THE CENTER OF HURRICANE SANDY WAS LOCATED NEAR LATITUDE 37.5N… LONGITUDE 71.5W. THIS WAS ABOUT 315 MILES EAST OF WASHINGTON DC. SANDY WAS MOVING NORTHWEST AT 18 MPH… WITH MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS OF 90 MPH. SANDY IS FORECAST TO MAKE LANDFALL ALONG THE SOUTHERN NEW JERSEY COAST EARLY TONIGHT… WITH A LITTLE STRENGTHENING POSSIBLE BEFORE LANDFALL. SANDY WILL SEVERELY IMPACT THE REGION WELL BEFORE IT COMES ASHORE.
SUMMARY OF THREATS —————— * THE MAIN IMMEDIATE THREATS FOR SANDY WILL BE STRONG WINDS RESULTING IN WIDESPREAD DOWNED TREES AND POWER/COMMUNICATIONS OUTAGES… AND HEAVY RAINS WHICH WILL RESULT IN EXTENSIVE FLOODING OF LOCAL STREAMS AND CREEKS. * BLIZZARD CONDITIONS ARE FORECAST IN THE POTOMAC HIGHLANDS AT ELEVATIONS ABOVE 2000 FEET WHERE 18 TO 24 INCHES ARE FORECAST. * MAJOR RIVER FLOODING IS LIKELY TO OCCUR… STARTING THIS AFTERNOON ON SMALLER WATERSHEDS WHICH WILL LEAD TO FLOODING ON THE MAIN-STEM RIVERS SUCH AS THE POTOMAC AND THE SHENANDOAH.
CHANGES SINCE LAST LOCAL STATEMENT ———————————- * THE TIMING OF THE PEAK WINDS FROM SANDY ARE NOW EXPECTED FROM LATE THIS AFTERNOON TO DAYBREAK ON WEDNESDAY. * RAINFALL AMOUNTS HAVE BEEN INCREASED. THE GREATER BALTIMORE METRO AREA IS NOW FORECAST TO RECEIVE 8 TO 12 INCHES OF RAIN… WITH LOCALLY HIGHER AMOUNTS. * THE POTOMAC RIVER IS LIKELY TO GO INTO FLOOD STAGE BEGINNING AROUND WEDNESDAY AND LASTING THROUGH FRIDAY.
HIGH WINDS ———- * WINDS WILL INCREASE STEADILY TODAY… WITH THE MAXIMUM WIND GUSTS OCCURRING LATE THIS AFTERNOON THROUGH TUESDAY MORNING. * GENERALLY… SUSTAINED WINDS OF 30 TO 50 MPH WITH GUSTS TO 60 MPH CAN BE EXPECTED ACROSS THE ENTIRE REGION. * HURRICANE FORCE WIND GUSTS OF 70 AND POSSIBLY 80 MPH ARE EXPECTED TO IMPACT A REGION LOCATED BETWEEN BEL AIR MD… POINT LOOKOUT MD… AND HAGERSTOWN MD BETWEEN 6 PM THIS EVENING TO 6 AM TUESDAY. THIS INCLUDES THE GREATER BALTIMORE AND WASHINGTON METROPOLITAN AREAS. * COUPLED WITH HEAVY RAINS FROM SANDY… THE HIGH WINDS WILL RESULT IN SIGNIFICANT TREE DAMAGE AND POWER LINE DAMAGE.
RAINFALL AND FLOODING ——————— * 8 TO 12 INCHES OF RAIN IN NORTHEAST AND NORTH CENTRAL MD INCLUDING THE BALTIMORE METRO AREA AND ALONG THE WEST SHORE OF THE BAY. * 5 TO 10 INCHES OF RAIN IS EXPECTED ACROSS THE FREDERICK… WASHINGTON AND FREDERICKSBURG METRO AREAS. * 3 TO 6 INCHES OF RAIN IS EXPECTED FOR EASTERN WEST VIRGINIA AND VIRGINIA… WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE DC METRO COUNTIES… AS WELL AS WESTERN MARYLAND WEST OF HANCOCK MD. * THIS AMOUNT OF RAIN WILL LIKELY RESULT IN EXTENSIVE AND DANGEROUS FLOODING OF LOCAL STREAMS AND CREEKS STARTING THIS AFTERNOON AND LASTING INTO WEDNESDAY.
MAIN-STEM RIVER FLOODING ———————— * THE POTOMAC RIVER WILL LIKELY START FLOODING TUESDAY NIGHT AND CONTINUE THROUGH THE END OF THE WEEK. * THE MONOCACY RIVER IS FORECAST TO FLOOD LATER TODAY AND CONTINUE TO BE IN MAJOR FLOOD THROUGH EARLY THURSDAY. LEVELS FORECAST HAVE NOT BEEN SEEN SINCE AGNES IN 1972.
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