After the Storm Update

Hurricane Sandy has been devastating to most of Long Island. Like many of you, I am without electricity, cable and therefore internet. Luckily, I have a phone that I get emails on and can access the internet on a limited basis. Unfortunately when I use it a lot the battery drains and I have to sit in my car to charge it. My cell number has been emailed to all host families and au pairs.

Each work day I will spend sometime at my sister’s home (who has not lost any of the modern conveniences) to do some work. I will answer emails and return calls as best as I can. I know school is closed and kids are home with little to do. If you want to trick or treat in a safe place, Stony Brook Village is having their Halloween Festival today. I will be there at 3 PM, if anyone wants to join me.

Stay safe, stay calm and know I will return all emails and calls to the best of my ability.

Cindy

Tips for after the storm:
• If you evacuated, return home only when officials say it is safe.
• If you cannot return home and have immediate housing needs. Text SHELTER + your ZIP code to 43362 (4FEMA) to find the nearest shelter in your area (example: shelter 12345).
• Drive only if necessary and avoid flooded roads and washed out bridges. Stay off the streets. If you must go out watch for fallen objects; downed electrical wires; and weakened walls, bridges, roads, and sidewalks.
• Keep away from loose or dangling power lines and report them immediately to the power company.
• Walk carefully around the outside your home and check for loose power lines, gas leaks and structural damage before entering.
• Stay out of any building if you smell gas, floodwaters remain around the building or your home was damaged by fire and the authorities have not declared it safe.
• Use battery-powered flashlights in the dark. Do NOT use candles. Note: The flashlight should be turned on outside before entering – the battery may produce a spark that could ignite leaking gas, if present.
• Watch your pets closely and keep them under your direct control. Watch out for wild animals, especially poisonous snakes. Use a stick to poke through debris.
• Avoid drinking or preparing food with tap water until you are sure it’s not contaminated.
• Check refrigerated food for spoilage. If in doubt, throw it out.
• Wear protective clothing and be cautious when cleaning up to avoid injury.
• Use the telephone only for emergency calls.
• NEVER use a generator inside homes, garages, crawlspaces, sheds, or similar areas, even when using fans or opening doors and windows for ventilation. Deadly levels of carbon monoxide can quickly build up in these areas and can linger for hours, even after the generator has shut off.
For more information visit the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services and the NYS Department of Health.

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