It looks like Hurricane Irene is heading our way, and will affect our area sometime Sunday.
The National Weather Service currently predicts that the center of Irene will approach Maryland on Sunday, with wind gusts between 74 and 110 miles per hour. While the center of the storm may remain off coast, forecasters are examining several computer models indicating that it could move inland.
Hurricane Irene is currently off the southern tip of Florida in the Atlantic Ocean but is expected to travel up the East Coast as far north as New England, bringing with her hurricane force winds, extreme rainfall, significant coastal flooding and a tornado threat, according to The Weather Channel.
Heavy rain could track as far west as western Virginia, western Maryland, central Pennsylvania and central and western New York.
Foot’s Forecast has an analysis of several computer models, including some that show the heart of the storm drifting into the Chesapeake Bay and bi-secting the Delmarva Peninsula.
“The impact and property damage potential of that outcome would exceed Katrina,” Foot’s Forecast said.
The National Weather Service has issued a flash flood warning today for much of the Baltimore-Washington region, due to the chance of severe thunderstorms that could bring rainfall at a rate of one to two inches per hour. The warning will be in effect until this evening.
According to The Baltimore Sun, the storming ahead of Hurricane Irene's arrival could increase the chance of flooding.
Where to Stock Up
If you need to stock up on supplies, it’s probably better to do it sooner than later.
Here are some local places to go:
– 8380 Piney Orchard Parkway, Odenton
– 2294 Blue Water Boulevard, Odenton
– 407 George Claus Blvd, Severn
– 415 George Claus Blvd., Severn
The Department of Homeland Security's FEMA suggests the following when preparing for a hurricane:
- Make plans to secure your property. Permanent storm shutters offer the best protection for windows. A second option is to board up windows with 5/8-inch marine plywood, cut to fit and ready to install. Tape does not prevent windows from breaking.
- Install straps or additional clips to securely fasten your roof to the frame structure. This will reduce roof damage.
- Be sure trees and shrubs around your home are well trimmed.
- Clear loose and clogged rain gutters and downspouts.
- Determine how and where to secure your boat.
- Consider building a safe room.
Protect Your Property from Flooding
- Build With Flood Damage Resistant Materials
- Raise Electrical System Components
- Anchor Fuel Tanks
- Install Sewer Backflow Valves
Protect Your Property from High Winds
- Maintain EIFS Walls
- Protect Windows and Doors with Covers
- Reinforce or Replace Garage Doors
- Remove Trees and Potential Windborne Missiles
- Secure Metal Siding and Metal Roofs
- Secure Built-Up and Single-Ply Roofs
- Secure Composition Shingle Roofs
- Brace Gable End Roof Framing