Hasbrouck Heights has begun preparing for what Hurricane Sandy, also known as the "Frankenstorm," could possilby bring to the area early next week.
Hasbrouck Heights Police Chief Michael Colaneri says he has met with the head of DPW, the borough administrator and the school superintendent Friday and they are all ready and prepared to deal with what may come.
Luckily Hasbrouck Heights is not prone to flooding like other area boroughs but the largest concern is severe high winds which take down trees and power lines, he says.
Colaneri referred to what the October Nor' Easter storm did to the area last year, just two days before Halloween. The October 2011 storm took down trees and power lines all over the borough. Huge downed trees and branches closed down streets and several areas around town had no electricity for days.
The chief says decisions regarding school closings would be based on the severity of the winds. Winds over 45 miles per hour would likely be the deciding factor, he says. Right now it is not known exactly when the storm would impact the area by Monday or Tuesday if it continues to head this way. Colaneri says he hopes the storm makes a right instead of a left and this area is spared.
The area most prone to flooding in Hasbrouck Heights is the northbound section of Route 17 near Williams Avenue. Last August, Hurricane Irene shut down the roadway for more than a day.
The chief advises residents to not panic but make preparations ahead of time. He suggests checking generators, make sure to have batteries on hand and stock up on canned goods in the event of power outages and secure outdoor items to secure them against high winds.
In the event high winds do take down trees and power lines, the chief reminds residents to not go near any downed wires, even if it's believed to be a cable wire, and to rather be safe and report it to the police so they can contact PSE&G. He also recommends residents refer to FEMA.gov for assistance.
Patch will continue to report on emergency preparations and forecasts. Stay tuned.