Ox­ford, Bay Hun­dred brace for flood­ing

The Star Democrat - - FRONT PAGE - By JACK RODGERS jrodgers@ches­pub.com

OX­FORD — With Hurricane Florence a few hun­dred miles off the East Coast, res­i­dents across the Bay Hun­dred area have al­ready be­gun to feel the im­pacts of the storm.

A Tal­bot County Depart­ment of Emer­gency Ser­vices weather brief­ing Wed­nes­day noted a south­ern shift in the storm path, and also rec­om­mended res­i­dents con­tinue to mon­i­tor the storm. The cur­rent pro­jec­tion has the storm ap­proach­ing the coast of North Carolina and South Carolina Thurs­day and Fri­day. Winds up­wards of 130 mph have been recorded, and could af­fect that re­gion as early as Thurs­day morn­ing.

“Re­main vig­i­lant and stay up to date with cur­rent fore­casts as this storm is still over twenty-four hours away from mak­ing land­fall and could po­ten­tially shift tracks again,” Geneva Har­ri­son, Tal­bot County emer­gency man­age­ment co­or­di­na­tor, said. “With a buildup of wa­ter in the mouth of the Ch­e­sa­peake Bay, our re­gion could po­ten­tially see mild tidal flood­ing due to high tides and added rain­fall Thurs­day evening into the week­end.”

Tal­bot County Depart­ment of Emer­gency Ser­vices is mon­i­tor­ing Hurricane Florence and com­mu­ni­cat­ing daily with the Mary­land

Emer­gency Man­age­ment Agency, the Del­marva Emer­gency Task­force and the Na­tional Weather Ser­vice. Res­i­dents also can stay up to date on the storm by sign­ing up Tal­bot Cit­i­zen Alert for weather and safety in­for­ma­tion through www. tal­bot­des.org.

An­other use­ful source, www.knowyour­zonemd. com, lists the po­ten­tial im­pact of flood­ing for towns in the Bay Hun­dred area.

Coastal flood­ing specif­i­cally has al­ready drowned many bay­side roads in Ox­ford. Tues­day, the west­bound lane of Ox­ford Road was com­pletely sub­merged near the Ox­ford Yacht Agency. Cul­verts along Mar­ket Street over­flowed near the wa­ter.

Ox­ford’s high tides, which will bring with them the high­est chance of flood­ing, will oc­cur at 7:02 a.m. and 7:50 p.m.

A town com­mis­sion­ers meet­ing was can­celed Tues­day, as the group held a closed ses­sion to dis­cuss emer­gency prepa­ra­tions. Town Ad­min­is­tra­tor Ch­eryl Lewis said the meet­ing was to give the com­mis­sion­ers an over view of the emer­gency pro­ce­dures.

“Be­cause there are new com­mis­sion­ers, I felt it was good to re­view the emer­gency plan,” Lewis said. “If the hurricane did make a turn to­wards the area, then a declaration of emer­gency would be made to the town.”

A news re­lease from the Of­fice of the State Fire Mar­shal also cau­tioned Mary­lan­ders when us­ing al­ter­na­tive light and elec­tri­cal sources, such as gen­er­a­tors or other equip­ment. The ap­pli­ances can pro­duce the deadly, odor­less gas car­bon monox­ide, along with risk for elec­tri­cal shock and fires.

Al­ways use gen­er­a­tors out­side, and make sure car­bon monox­ide de­tec­tors are work­ing prop­erly. Gen­er­a­tors should be in a well ven­ti­lated area away from doors, win­dows and vents. Never re­fuel gen­er­a­tors while they are in use and make sure gen­er­a­tors are cool be­fore re­fu­el­ing.

PHOTO BY JACK RODGERS

Ox­ford Beach Wed­nes­day showed lit­tle sign of flood­ing, how­ever, high tides have af­fected the wa­ter level dra­mat­i­cally in the area.

PHOTO BY JACK RODGERS

A sign on Mar­ket Street Wed­nes­day warns res­i­dents of the po­ten­tial of over­flow­ing cul­verts. Bay roads on both sides of the penin­sula in Ox­ford have flooded, re­cently.

PHOTO BY JACK RODGERS

Wa­ter creeps over the shoul­der on Ox­ford Road’s west­bound lane Wed­nes­day.

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