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Onondaga County officials monitor Hurricane Sandy's path

— The Onondaga County Department of Emergency Management has been closely monitoring Sandy’s path over the last several days. The National Weather Service has provided regularly scheduled briefings and currently Onondaga County is expecting strong winds beginning later this afternoon and throughout the evening.

Onondaga County’s Emergency Operations Center, located at the John Mulroy Civic Center in Syracuse, will be open throughout the day today and this evening to monitor the storm’s impact and coordinate response efforts.

“Currently it appears Onondaga County will miss the direct impact of Sandy; however, we will be affected,” said Commissioner of Emergency Management Kevin Wisely. “We are prepared to respond to whatever develops and encourage everyone to keep aware of what is happening and stay safe until the storm passes.”

“We have been tracking the developments closely,” said County Executive Joanie Mahoney. “At this point we are focusing our efforts on providing the information we are receiving to department heads, village and town officials and the City of Syracuse. It is important that the lines of communication are clear and open.”

The Office of Emergency Management will provide regular updates on local storm developments via Onondaga County’s emergency preparedness website. The site includes links and updates and important information on storm preparedness and recovery.

Be prepared

County Executive Mahoney and Commissioner Wisely encourage all residents to have emergency supplies at the ready including fresh water, ready-to-eat canned or packaged foods, flashlights, batteries, a battery powered radio, a first aid kit and medications.

In the event of a power outage, please do not call 911. Instead, residents are encouraged to contact National Grid’s storm response hotline at 800-867-5222. Calls to 911 to report power outages can overwhelm 911 operators and interfere or delay the County’s ability to respond to medical emergencies.

When using a home generator, do not connect directly to your home’s wiring. Connecting a portable electric generator directly to household wiring can be dangerous and even deadly. Improper venting and use of a generator or other gasoline-propelled equipment may cause carbon monoxide poisoning. Also, do not burn charcoal or gas grills inside a house, garage, vehicle, tent or fireplace.

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