I encourage all residents to stay inside and off the roads for the next 36 hours and to follow all safety precautions and evacuation orders, if given. The Office of Personnel Management has announced the federal government will be closed tomorrow, October 30 and Governor O'Malley has announced the state government will be closed tomorrow. The status at NAS Patuxent River is "essential personnel only" tomorrow. Early voting in Maryland will also be closed.
A voluntary evacuation is in place for low-lying areas in St. Mary’s County. Other areas in Maryland also have voluntary and mandatory evacuations in place.
The following VOLUNTARY evacuations are currently in place:
St. Mary’s: low-lying areas
Somerset County: low-lying areas
Ocean City: island wide
Wicomico: all low lying areas around Nanticoke
Talbot: low lying areas
City of Annapolis: low-lying
Queen Anne’s: low-lying
The following MANDATORY evacuations are currently in place:
Ocean City – 17th Street South and known flood prone areas
Worcester – All waterfront properties in the county. This includes all properties in the West Ocean City area, the communities of Cape Isle of Wight, Mystic Harbour, Snug Harbor, The Landings and Assateague Point. Also included in this are South Point, anything east of the parkway in Ocean Pines and all other waterfront properties throughout Worcester County.
Shelters are open throughout the Fifth District. If you are planning on relocating to a shelter, please bring any toiletries and medications in quantities sufficient for several days. Many of the shelters accept pets, but please bring their food, water, and medications.
St. Mary's County: Shelters are located at Great Mills and Leonardtown High Schools. Pets are accepted, and Animal Control staff will relocate them to the county fairgrounds where they will be housed for the duration of the storm.
Calvert County: A shelter is located at Huntingtown High School. Pets in carriers are accepted, and will be kept in the field house of the high school.
Charles County: A shelter is located at the Department of Community Services building in Port Tobacco. Pets in carriers are accepted.
Prince George's County: Shelters are located at Charles H. Flowers High School, Gwynn Park High School, and Ritchie Coliseum at the University of Maryland, College Park.
Many residents could experience power outages during the storm. I also visited SMECO today for a briefing on their preparedness. They have assembled more than 533 field workers to be available to respond to outages throughout the storm. If you do experience an outage, contact information for our local utility companies is below: