Quincy is bracing for Hurricane Sandy, which is scheduled to reach New England sometime Tuesday morning, but whose impacts could be felt as early as Sunday evening.
Crews are preparing for the worst around the city, with Mayor Thomas Koch meeting with the full emergency-response team on Friday morning, speaking with the the DPW, Parks Department, Police and Fire Department, and School Department to coordinate a response.
“We are going to have full staff available,” said mayoral spokesperson Christopher Walker. “The Park and Forestry Departments will have additional manpower through outside contractors for tree service. The DPW - we have 70 pumps ready to be deployed into the neighborhoods where needed. Crews are out today checking and cleaning catch basins, and checking tide gates.”
The mayor is also encouraging residents to check catch basins in their area, as they city won’t be able to reach all the ones in the city before the storm hits.
Sandbags are also available at the DPW yard for those who would like them.
“[We] hope for the best, prepare for the worst. We don’t know at this point [how serious it will be],” Walker said. “Those spaghetti tracks are not confirming any track at this point.”
With Quincy experiencing 100-year storm levels only two years ago, city officials say they are well equipped to handle whatever comes their way.
“Seems to me like we’ve been through four or five 100-year storms in the last couple of years. But we’re treating it as the worst possible scenario in terms of preparation. Quite frankly we have had a good amount of experience in the last several years with these kinds of storms,” Walker said.
Police and fire personnel will be stationed on peninsulas in case there is any wash out of major arteries, and Quincy High School will be prepared as an emergency shelter if needed, Walker said.
The city is also planning to activate the emergency operation center when necessary.
“At this point…Monday’s low tide of 5 a.m. will be the last real low tide prior to the event occurring, and that’s what we’re basing a lot of our preparation on right now,” Walker said.
If an emergency occurs, people should call 911. To report downed trees or non-emergency flooding, residents are encouraged to call 617-376-1910.