Hurricane Sandy: Bloomfield Schools Closed
Important information on what Bloomfield is doing to prepare for Hurricane Sandy
Bloomfield schools are closed Monday and Tuesday in anticipation of Hurricane Sandy, a slow-moving "superstorm" that will wallop New Jersey Monday, bringing heavy rainfall and dangerous winds.
Bloomfield College, as well as state and county government offices, are also closed Monday and Tuesday.
New Jersey Transit will shut down their rail, bus, light rail and Access Link service at 4 p.m. Sunday and continuing through 2 a.m. Monday.
Essex County officials announced Codey Arena in West Orange will be open beginning Sunday night to residents seeking shelter from the storm.
With officials warning of widespread power outages that could last days in wake of Sandy, residents scrambled Sunday to make last-minute preparations, cramming grocery store parking lots and waiting in line to fill up their tanks.
Mayor Raymond McCarthy said township officials are more than prepared for what Sandy may bring.
"It's going to be an ugly one," he said, "...but we are prepared, we're ready ready to take it on."
McCarthy offered residents standard storm preparedness tips, like charge cell phones and computers, have flashlights and batteries handy and stock up on food and water. Channel 35 WBMA-TV, as well as the Bloomfield Township website, will also have updated storm information. (Click here to watch the mayor's message on WBMA-TV.)
Residents with questions or looking for information on Hurricane Sandy can call the town's emergency management line at 973-680-4177, which opens for calls Monday at 8 a.m. Those reporting downed wires should call 9-1-1 and power outages can be reported to 800-436-7734.
All garbage, leaf and recycling pickup will be canceled Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Garbage pickup will tentatively resume on Thursday and paper pickup will resume Monday, Nov. 12, McCarthy said. Leaf pickup has been canceled until further notice.
Residents are encouraged to drop off recycling at the Department of Public Works in advance of the storm.
"We're asking people stay out of the storm, don't go out," said the mayor. "Get your water, batteries and flashlights now. If you have senior neighbors or handicapped neighbors, check up on them during the storm to make sure they're OK."
The Bloomfield Fire Department is standing ready with pumps to drain flooded basements and equipment to remove broken branches. Last year, in wake of Tropical Storm Irene, the fire department pumped out 600 basements in two and a half days.
And it's prepared to do the same this year, if need be, said Fire Inspector Samuel Infante.
But he urged residents to take their own precautions before Hurricane Sandy reaches the Garden State, offering the following tips:
- Make sure your sump pump is operational.
- Have enough food and supplies on hand, so a trip to the store is not required.
- If you have a generator, make sure it starts and has enough fuel in case of a power failure.
- If you must drive, do not drive through standing water. The depth of a puddle can be deceiving.
- If the storm does hit our area hard, the best course of action is to stay inside.
- All outdoor household items should be tied down or stored away in case of high winds.
Fire officials will also be keeping their eye on parts of Bloomfield prone to heavy flooding, including the Newark Avenue area, Hearthstone Road, Brookside Park and portions of the south end of town, according to Infante.
Bloomfield schools posted on its website that the Code Red telephone alert system would be activated during the storm and that parents could turn to local TV channels, social media and the district website for information on school closings.
Will "Frankenstorm" Crash Halloween?
The National Weather Service is forecasting mostly cloudy skies with a chance rain and high near 51 on Halloween. But should Hurricane Sandy leave downed wires and fallen branches in her wake, the holiday in Bloomfield could once again be postponed, the mayor said.
"That's one of the calls we'll have to make going into Monday and Tuesday," said McCarthy.
[Editor's note: This story originally published Friday at 12:57 p.m. It has since been updated with more information.]
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- Codey Arena Open as Relief Center During Hurricane Sandy
- How to Prepare for Hurricane Sandy
- Gov. Christie: Prepare for Hurricane Sandy
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