The City of Winchester is preparing internally to be able to adequately respond to the needs of our community if the area is impacted by Hurricane Florence. Check this site often for updates and current information about City services, responses and recommendations from state offices, and more. You can also follow the City of Winchester on Facebook and Twitter for updates.
Notices and information about the City's response efforts and services during Hurricane Florence will be posted here.
- Week of 9/10/18 - Public Works staff is clearing out storm drains
- After the Storm, Don't Get Scammed - Read
- SVEC Encourages Preparation for Hurricane Florence (9/11/18) - Read
- Federal Government Authorizes Federal Emergency Declaration for Virginia (9/11/18) - Read
- Virginians Should Prepare Now for Hurricane Florence Impacts (9/9/18) - Read
- Governor Northam Declares State of Emergency in Advance of Tropical Storm Florence (9/8/18) - Read
- Monitor your local news and radio stations.
- Check the City’s Facebook page, Twitter feed and website for information and updates when available.
- If you live or work in the City of Winchester and are not currently registered to receive emergency and weather notifications through the City’s emergency notification system (Winchester Alerts powered by Everbridge), we encourage you to take the time to register today and customize your alert preferences.
Report Power Outages Immediately
If you experience a power outage, please call Shenandoah Valley Electric Cooperative (SVEC). SVEC urges its customers to call 1-800-234-7832 anytime there is a power outage and to not assume that others have reported the outage. By calling any time you experience an outage, you help crews respond more efficiently and restore your service more quickly.
What You Should Do:
- Do not drive through high water. Stay at home as severe weather arrives.
- Know the weather terms and what you should do:
- Watch - Conditions are favorable for the severe weather to occur and preparation for action is strongly encouraged.
- Warning - The severe weather has been seen or picked up by radar and requires more immediate action. Follow instructions for evacuation, sheltering, etc.
- Be prepared to evacuate. If evacuated, do not return to your home until local officials say it is safe. After floodwaters recede, roads could be weakened and could collapse. Buildings might be unstable, and drinking water might be contaminated.
- Use common sense. If water is rising quickly or you see a moving wall of mud or debris, immediately move to higher ground.
- Do not walk through moving water. What might seem like a small amount of moving water can easily knock you down.
- If you depend on electricity for medical equipment or a mobility device, ensure all batteries are fully charged each day and be prepared to evacuate with extra batteries and any charging equipment you will need.
- Do not make any attempts to clear trees or other debris from power lines. Note the location, and any other important information regarding these situations, and contact SVEC. Shenandoah Valley Electric Cooperative will work to ensure that power is restored as soon as possible.
- Avoid contact with downed power lines.
- If you will need to use paratransit, be sure to consider the amount of extra time you may need should evacuation be recommended. Find out now whether you will need to schedule a ride 24 hours in advance, how many personal items you are allowed to evacuate with, and whether your pets will be allowed on the paratransit vehicle.
- If you use durable medical equipment, need medical supplies, or take critical medications, ensure you have enough on hand for 5-7 days and include these items in your go-bag in case evacuation is recommended.
- Notify your support network now and start planning ahead for any disability-related or medical needs.
- Decide how and where everyone will meet up with each other if separated.
- Choose an out-of-town emergency contact for your family and give that person’s phone number to each family member.
- Sign up for text alerts/weather warnings that may be offered by your locality.
- Pre-pack a hurricane supply kit with a minimum three-day supply of essential items, such as water, non-perishable food, first aid kit, extra batteries and prescribed medications. Don't forget about your pet's needs.
- Secure garbage cans, lawn furniture or anything that could become airborne and cause damage.
- Helpful smartphone apps:
- The SVEC app, MySVEC, is a great tool to use to report your outage and monitor restoration progress from your mobile device.
- Download the FEMA app and receive real-time alerts from the National Weather Service, learn emergency safety tips and locate open emergency shelters and find disaster recovery centers (English and Spanish).
- Review road conditions, incident and construction updates and traffic information on the 511 Virginia app.
- Know the road conditions before you travel. Go to www.511Virginia.org or dial 511 from any phone for real-time traffic information and road condition reports.
- Do not drive into flooded areas. If your vehicle becomes surrounded by rising water, get out quickly and move to higher ground, if possible.
- Flood water might cut off access to roads. Be prepared to stay where you are until floodwaters recede.
- Determine in advance the safest route from your home to a safe place that can protect you from high winds or flooding. If there is a flood, you may have only minutes to get to safety.