Malden Prepares as Hurricane Irene Heads Toward New England
Although the forecast is still early, Malden will see heavy rainfall on Sunday from the hurricane.
While it's still too early to predict how intense the wind might be, one forecast is certain: Hurricane Irene is headed to New England and—at the very least—bringing a lot of rain with it.
The current National Weather Service (NWS) forecast for Malden calls for rain to start on Saturday afternoon and become heavy on Saturday night. On Sunday, tropical storm conditions are possible and by Sunday night, hurricane conditions are possible.
As of Wednesday night, Irene was a Category 3 hurricane—meaning it has sustained winds of 111-130 miles per hour—and predicted to make landfall in the Carolinas on Saturday. According to the National Hurricane Center, there is a 30 percent probability that Irene will still be classified as a hurricane on Sunday, when it's predicted to reach New England.
Malden officials met in Mayor Richard Howard's office Thursday afternoon to discuss city preparations.
“We went over a few odds and ends, (made sure) all the equipment was up and running,” Department of Public Works Director Jeffrey Manship said. “We're keeping a watchful eye on the (storm) coming in, and waiting to see how she moves in regards to what we're going to put into action.”
Crews are also checking streams and catch basins to make sure there are no unnoticed blockages that may cause flooding in the fury of the storm.
Manship said he felt the media may be “hyping” the storm's effects in the Boston area, but should the worst come to pass, the city will be ready.
“Now, if you get an inch an hour and the system backs up because of high tide...there will be backups,” he said. “Lots of debris on the streets from the wind, that will back up (traffic)...our crews will be out for those problems, and resolve them.”
Readers: E-mail us photos of the storm or sign in with your Malden Patch account or Facebook account and add them to this article.
The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) recommends that every home and business should have a stocked basic emergency supply kit that could be used for any emergency, regardless of the time of year. Everyone should keep certain items around the house and workplace in the event you are isolated for three to five days without power.
Each kit will be unique to each family, but should include a portable radio, flashlight, extra batteries, a supply of non-perishable foods, along with bottled water, a first aid kit, extra prescription medication, and extra food and supplies for infants and pets.
All families should develop a ‘Family Emergency Communication Plan’ to help ensure everyone is safe. You should contact your local authorities to learn about your community’s potential evacuation routes and the location of emergency. It is important to familiarize yourself with your Community’s Emergency Plans before an emergency situation occurs.
Also, develop a Disaster Supply Kit ‘Go Bag’, with essentials in case you must evacuate quickly.
And Malden Patch would like to remind you: Don't Panic.
Protecting Your Home
MEMA recommends the following tips for protecting your home:
- Learn the particular hurricane risks for your area. Find out if your home is subject to storm surge or inland flooding.
- Make a record of your personal property. Keep an itemized list of your furniture, clothing and valuables to assist adjusters in case of a claim. Back it up with photographs or video.
- Protect your insurance policies and other important documents in a secure place like a safe deposit box or a watertight box. Many people back up important documents online.
- Keep trees and shrubbery around your home trimmed. Remove diseased or damaged tree limbs that could be blown down, causing damage, during a storm.
- Clear clogged rain gutters. Hurricanes/tropical storms often bring torrential rain. Providing clear drainage will help prevent misdirected flooding.
- Make sure storage sheds, children’s playhouses or other outbuildings are securely anchored, either to a permanent foundation or with straps and ground anchors.
- Make temporary plywood covers to protect windows and sliding doors. Drill holes for screws or lag bolts in each cover and around each window. To save time, use a numbering or lettering system that shows which cover goes with which window. Store the mounting screws or lag bolts with the covers in a place where they are readily accessible. Note: Taping of windows does not prevent them from breaking.
- Make a list of outdoor items to bring inside in case of a storm, such as lawn furniture, trash barrels, hanging plants, toys and awnings. A list will help you more quickly identify anything that can be broken or picked up by strong winds and used as a missile.
- Learn where gas pilots and water mains are located and how to safely shut off all utilities.
- Lock doors and windows to ensure that they are closed tight to help protect against strong winds and rain.
- Buy Flood Insurance. Unlike damage from hurricane winds, water damage from coastal or inland flooding is not covered by homeowners insurance. Contact your local insurance agent or contact the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).
Important Numbers and Information
French Toast Alert Level:
State of Emergency:
- The city has not declared a state of emergency.
Emergency Parking Restrictions:
- There are no parking restrictions in effect.
Cancellations and Closings:
- E-mail your cancellations and reports from around the city to email@example.com or post them in the comments below.
Trash and Recycling Pickup:
- There is no change to the pickup schedule.
- DPW City Yard: 781-397-7160
- Police/ Fire Emergencies: 911
- Non-Emergency Police : 781-397-7171
- Non-Emergency Fire : 781-397-7383
- National Grid power outages : (800) 465-1212
- National Grid gas emergencies: (800) 233-5325
- Comcast: (800) 266-2278
- Verizon: (800) 837-4966 (VERIZON)
List of cab companies:
- Taxi Time: (781) 662-0300
- Malden Taxi: (781) 322-5050 and (781) 324-5050
- Malden Cab Company: (781) 322-5050
- Oak Grove Cab: (781) 665-5050
- Stoneham Taxi: (781) 279-2828
- Tan Taxi: (781) 395-6666
List of tow companies:
- Stephen's Autobody: 781-665-7828
- Andy's Service Center (Malden): (781) 324-7505
- Culleton Brothers (Malden): (781) 322-4665
- Kearney's Towing (Stoneham): (781) 438-8484
- Stoneham Towing Inc.: (781) 438-3500
- Phil Howe's Towing (Wakefield): (781) 245-2468
- Advanced Auto Transport (Wakefield): (781) 246-5831