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Power Companies Gearing Up for Thursday Storms

WASHINGTON, D.C. (WUSA9) -- Myra Oppel was sitting in her office at Pepco's Headquarters when the Derecho of 2012 hit. 

She watched as the power company's outages jumped from a few thousand to almost half a million. By the time it was all over, more than two-million people in Virginia, Maryland, and the District were in the dark, and it would take nearly two weeks before all the power was restored.

Almost a year later, Oppel met with WUSA9 to discuss what Pepco's doing to prepare for this latest round of storms. 

Avoiding the Derecho's Autumn Harvest

On June 29th, like so many in the path of the Derecho, my power went out around 10PM. For roughly two days. Almost immediately I felt an itchiness arising from my carpet. By Sunday, since my apartment faces West and catches the afternoon Sun, I sought shelter in a hotel, as the temperature in my unit was fast approaching 90 degrees. I'm originally from upstate New York. Growing up, Summer was six weeks. I don't do heat, let alone this!

When I swung by my abode Monday morning, I had power, so I checked out of my temporary digs. The A/C was on; the apartment was cooling; but the scratchiness remained.

Councilmember Cheh Examines the District’s Snow and Ice Removal Readiness

Councilmember Cheh Examines the District’s Snow and Ice Removal Readiness

 

From Kiara Pesante:

Yesterday, Councilmember Mary M. Cheh, Chair of the Committee on the Environment, Public Works, and Transportation, held a public oversight roundtable on the District’s plan to manage and remove snow and ice.

DC Snow Team Deploys Tonight

DC Snow Team Deploys Tonight

 

This advisory comes to us from Linda Grant:

The DC Snow Team (Department of Public Works and the District Department of Transportation) will deploy 45 plows beginning at midnight tonight to focus on elevated structures and bridges, including I295 and its ramps, Potomac River and Anacostia River crossings, and other bridges.  While no more than one-half inch of snow is predicted to accumulate on grassy surfaces, elevated structures freeze more quickly and slush can form when the temperature dips overnight.

FEMA chief: Stay at home in Irene's wake

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The head of the nation's emergency response agency says people shouldn't underestimate the danger once Hurricane Irene passes.

Federal Emergency Management Agency chief Craig Fugate says flooding, weakened trees and downed power lines pose a danger even after the storm moves north up the Atlantic Coast.

Fugate is urging people not to drive around and sightsee after the storm has passed through their areas. His advice: Stay inside, stay off the roads, and let the power crews do their job.

Fugate made the round of the Sunday talk shows as the storm moved through New York City and the Northeast.

Steady Rain In DC Ahead Of Irene; No Big Problems

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A steady rain ahead of Hurricane Irene's arrival has led to road closures and downed power lines in the District of Columbia, but officials aren't reporting any major or unexpected problems.

D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray declared a state of emergency on Friday, enabling the district to tap federal funds for damage costs. Officials also are bracing for days of widespread power outages, though Metro says it expects to continue operating unless conditions become worse than expected.

The district says it'll open five shelters for residents displaced from their homes if necessary. Officials also estimate that they've distributed some 6,000 sandbags.

Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley says the hurricane is expected to arrive in the state earlier than expected, with the eye passing over Ocean City sometime around midnight.