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(609) 883-2900 
2 Jake Garzio Drive
Ewing, NJ 08628

Summer 2022 – Heat and Hurricanes

Be Ready | Be Prepared

It’s summertime and the living is easy, or maybe not…  While summertime brings to mind the good times of family gatherings and outdoor fun, we also need to exercise some caution during the season.  Last week we wrote about two backyard pests that pose threats to our comfort and health, mosquitoes and ticks.  This week we urge everyone to enjoy the season, but to be prepared for two of the summer’s biggest threats, extreme heat and hurricanes. 

Before you do anything else, sign up for Alerts from Ewing Township!

Swift911The first step to your emergency preparedness is to sign up for alerts and warnings published by the Township and other agencies to stay abreast of emergencies happening locally.   Ewing Township publishes warnings via the Switft911 Notification System, also known as the “Mayor’s Messages.”  Sign up now to ensure that you receive these critical Ewing-centric notifications as they are published. 

The Swift911™ Community Notification System will keep you up to date about both emergency and non-emergency situations.  Receive a phone call, email or text about floods, fires, water emergencies, road closures, missing persons, evacuation orders, and weather emergencies. Non-emergency notifications may include Township information such as event and program reminders, service information, and other general communications. You may customize your alerts by opting-in or opting-out of some types of notifications.

If a family member has medical disabilities and will need special assistance during an emergency, we encourage them to sign up for NJ Special Needs Registry. The “Register Ready” program allows NJ residents with disabilities to preregister so that emergency responders can better plan to serve them in a disaster or other emergency. 

Ewing’s Fire Companies also maintain their own database of addresses/individuals that need special assistance evacuating.  Fill out their Emergency Information Request form and send it to them to be included in their database and ensure that they are especially prepared to help you in the event of an emergency.  (This information is not publicly shared.) 

Extreme Heat - There is hot, and then there is hot!

extreme heatExtreme heat is a period of high heat (temperatures above 90°) combined with high humidity for at least two to three days. During this time, your body has to work extra hard to maintain a normal temperature.  This is especially hard on seniors, children and sick or overweight individuals.   Did you know that extreme heat is responsible for the highest number of annual deaths among all weather-related hazards?

As with all disaster preparedness scenarios, we urge you to prepare before the summer heat hits.

  • Learn to recognize the signs of heat illness.
  • Do not rely on a fan as your primary cooling device. Fans create air flow and a false sense of comfort, but do not reduce body temperature or prevent heat-related illnesses.
  • Cover your windows with drapes or shades.
  • Weather-strip doors and windows.
  • Use window reflectors specifically designed to reflect heat back outside.
  • Add insulation to keep the heat out.
  • Use a powered attic ventilator, or attic fan, to regulate the heat level of a building’s attic by clearing out hot air.
  • Install window air conditioners and insulate around them.
  • If you are unable to afford your cooling costs, weatherization or energy-related home repairs, contact the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) for help.

During the Heat Emergency

  • If you don’t have air conditioning in your home, go to a cooling center. The Ewing Senior and Community Center at 999 Lower Ferry Road is our designated Cooling Center.  It is open normal hours unless the conditions of the emergency dictate otherwise. The Ewing branch of the Mercer County Library may be a Mercer County designated Cooling Center.   Contact the Ewing Health Department if you have any questions (609-883-2900 x7691)
  • Take cool showers or baths.
  • Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing.
  • Use your oven less to help reduce the temperature in your home.
  • If you’re outside, find shade. Wear a hat wide enough to protect your face.
  • Drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated.
  • Avoid high-energy activities or work outdoors, during midday heat, if possible.
  • Check on family members, seniors, and neighbors.
  • Watch for heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
  • Pet safety tips. If they are outside, make sure they have plenty of cool water and access to comfortable shade. Asphalt and dark pavement can be very hot to your pet’s feet. Never leave people or pets in a closed car on a warm day.

The 2022 Hurricane Season

HurricaneStep up your readiness for the 2022 hurricane season and ensure that you won’t be caught off guard during the next extreme weather event. If the events of the last number of years have taught us anything, it’s that Climate Change is having unexpected impacts and that we need to be prepared for stronger, more erratic weather events. 

According to the New Jersey Scientific Report on Climate Change published by the DEP in 2020, “the number of 3, 4, and 5 North Atlantic hurricanes has increased since 1951, most likely due to higher sea surface temperatures occurring in the region where Atlantic hurricanes form. Because sea surface temperatures are expected to increase as a result of the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, future projected scenarios show a potential for hurricanes to become more intense as they move towards the east coast of the United States.” [1] 

Planning and preparation can make all the difference to your safety and recovery during times of perilous weather.  Plan now so that you will know what to do in the event of a hurricane. 

The 2022 Hurricane Season Outlook 

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) recently updated their forecast for the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season and predicted an above-normal Atlantic hurricane season.

The ideal time to prepare for a hurricane is when there is no hurricane…  PREPARE

When a hurricane is on its way….  SURVIVE

  • Stay informed with emergency notifications
  • Protect your property. Clean out drains and gutters.  Put away outdoor furniture and other objects such as garbage cans that can become missiles and cause damage.  Anchor objects that would be unsafe to bring inside (propane tanks). 
  • Turn on your TV or radio to receive the latest weather updates and emergency instructions.
  • Make sure that you cell phone is fully charged. In the event of power outage, use it only as needed.  Don’t waste the charge!
  • Make sure that the gas tank on your car is full and that it is in good working condition.
  • Stock the car with your portable emergency kit and change of clothes.
  • Make sure that you stock up on supplies for at least three days. It may be a while until trucks delivering foodstuffs and other supplies can get through to the local markets.  Be sure to fill prescriptions for any needed medications.  Don’t forget your pets in this planning.
  • Review your emergency procedures with family members. Plan ahead in case you need to evacuate.  Plan on what you will do in case you lose power. 
  • Within the last 6 hours or so before the hurricane arrives, turn the refrigerator/freezer to the coldest settings and open only when necessary. If you lose power, the food will last longer.

When the hurricane is here… SURVIVE

  • Follow directives from local authorities
  • Don’t hesitate when advised to evacuate. Grab your Go Bagand go.
  • High winds safety - Stay away from windows and seek shelter on the lowest level in an interior room.
  • If you become trapped in a building by flooding, go to the highest level of that building. Do NOT climb into an enclosed attic.
  • Use generators OUTDOORS only and away from windows.
  • Can 9-1-1 if you are in life threatening danger.
  • Never walk or drive thru flooded roads. The adage is: “Turn around, don’t drown.”
  • Stay off bridges over fast-moving water.

Afterwards… BE SAFE

Again, also listen to local authorities for information and special instructions. The hurricane may be over, but that doesn’t mean the danger is.

  • Be careful during the clean-up. Wear protective clothing.  Do not work alone.
  • Electrical equipment. Do not touch if it is wet or you are in standing water.  Turn off electricity at the main breaker or fuse box to prevent electric shock.
  • Watch out for floating debris. Don’t wade in flood water. 
  • Be aware that underground or downed power lines can also charge the water.
  • Document property damage with photos. Contact your insurance company for instructions and assistance.
  • If you lose power, save your phone calls for emergencies. Use text messages to communicate with family and friends. 

Each year, we witness the devastating impacts that hurricanes can cause. Hurricanes are not just a threat to coastal communities. High winds, heavy rainfall, tornadoes, and flooding can be felt hundreds of miles inland, potentially causing loss of life and catastrophic damage to property. As Tropical Storm Ida reminded us, it is not just major hurricanes (Category 3 or higher) that we need to worry about, but all hurricanes/tropical storms can cause significant damage.  We encourage you to prepare now for your safety during the 2022 Hurricane season.


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