In anticipation of potential impacts from Hurricane Matthew later this week, the City of Alachua has activated its emergency operations plan and urges its customers to get prepared.
Depending on its path, Hurricane Matthew is capable of causing widespread power outages and catastrophic property damages. In addition, restoration may be hampered by flooding, downed trees or other obstacles. City of Alachua crews are prepared to work long hours after the storm passes, restoring service to customers as quickly and as safely as possible.
Take action now! Create a hurricane survival kit that includes first aid supplies, a battery powered radio, tarps, batteries, and flashlights. Make sure to have a few days’ supply of any needed prescription medicine, baby food and diapers, pet food, canned food and drinking water (at least one gallon per person, per day). Have extra cash on hand and make sure you have a full tank of gas in your car and proper fuel on hand for a gas grill and/or generator.
To determine a hurricane evacuation route, visit www.FloridaDisaster.org.
There are two (2) sand bag locations in Alachua:
Former Alachua City Hall Property: 15001 NW 140th St.
Wayside Park Near Hague/Turkey Creek: 12093 NW US Hwy 441
Information about local shelters that will be open during the storm can be found by visiting Alachua County Emergency Management website.
If you are a customer that is medically dependent on electricity for oxygen or other equipment, please make sure you have a backup generator in place or additional power backup. Utilities typically cannot respond to customers with special needs during or immediately after a storm. Have an evacuation plan and know special needs shelter locations. If you or someone you know has special electrical medical equipment needs, notify the City’s utility billing division at 386-418-6110 prior to the storm’s arrival.
Customers who experience a power outage or water/sewer issue are asked to call 386-418-6185 to report the matter. After the severe weather passes, City of Alachua crews will begin restoring services as quickly as possible. Crews will begin restoring services by repairing treatment facilities, substations, lifstations, and main distribution lines. Once the main lines are repaired, crews turn their attention to individual customer outages.
If you use a portable generator: DON’T run a generator in the house, DON’T run a generator in the garage, and DON’T plug a generator directly into a house’s main electrical system. The first two could lead to suffocation and the third could send an electrical charge back to the power grid, which would create an electrocution hazard for utility workers. DO set up generators outside in a well-ventilated area, and DO plug individual appliances directly into the generator.
Following the storm, restoration information can be obtained by checking the City’s website: www.cityofalachua.com