MIDDLESEX COUNTY, NJ -- September is National Preparedness month, and the Middlesex County Office of Emergency Management and Preparedness is encouraging residents to prepare for the threat of any storms that may occur this season as well as any other weather-related conditions. It’s hard to know exactly when or where a severe storm can strike.

In the event of severe weather, the Office of Emergency Management encourages all residents to stay informed.

Storm effects can include flooding or downed power lines, which may impact roadways or create other unsafe conditions. To stay aware of these effects, use reliable sources, such as the county, local or state health department and/or emergency management websites.

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If weather alerts are available in your area, sign up to be alerted. Local newspapers, radio and television stations are also good sources for information before and during an emergency. Prepare in advance for the unexpected.

“Our Department of Public Safety and Health, our Office of Emergency Management and Preparedness and the emergency personnel in all our municipalities are committed to protecting the safety and well-being of all our residents,” said Freeholder Shanti Narra, Chair of the County’s Public Safety and Health Committee. “Please help them to help you by following these safety tips during Hurricanes and all future storms.”

Tips for preparing for a severe weather event

  • Check flashlights, emergency equipment and essentials to ensure they are operational should there be a power outage.
  • Make certain that any generators or gasoline powered devices are operational and are well-vented.
  • Have an emergency kit prepared. This should include water, medication and other medical supplies, and nonperishable food. More tips on creating a kit can be found at ready.gov.
  • Create an emergency plan and contact list with family, school and health care information to be used if family members become separated during severe weather. Make sure this list is updated often, as cell phone numbers may change.

Tips to remember for during and after severe weather:

  • Stay indoors whenever possible.
  • During high winds, it’s safer to stay away from windows.
  • Avoid unnecessary driving until you know roadways are safe.
  • After a severe storm, it’s a good idea to check on your neighbors, especially those that are elderly, homebound or those with special needs.

“My fellow Freeholders and I urge you to stay indoors and off the roads during strong winds and storms,” said Freeholder Director Ronald G. Rios. “We all learned from Superstorm Sandy that storm warnings are not to be taken lightly, so please follow these tips if a storm does occur. Our first priority is always the safety of our residents and emergency workers.”


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