Officials Ask Vermonters To Prepare For Hurricane Irene

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(Host) A variety of agencies and companies in Vermont are preparing for problems that Hurricane Irene is expected to cause over the weekend.

Officials say there could be flash flooding, high winds and power outages as the hurricane moves up the Eastern seaboard.

Michael Muccilli of the  National Weather Service says Vermont should feel the effects of the hurricane by Sunday. 

(Muccilli) "Heavy rains, some gusty winds, thirty, forty miles per hour will start later Sunday, and going into Sunday night and ending on Monday morning." 

(Host) Mark Bosma of Vermont Emergency Management says the state is planning for a worst-case scenario.

Central Vermont Public Service serves about 160-thousand homes and businesses. It says people should be prepared to be without electricity for several days.

Governor Peter Shumlin wants Vermonters to prepare.

Current forecasts project the storm will pass just east of Vermont late Sunday.

The governor and emergency officials say there are several steps residents can take ahead of time to reduce their danger.

They include clearing yards of anything that could become airborne in high winds.

Authorities suggest that residents stock up up on water, non-perishable food and other supplies, to be able to stay at home for up to three days.

They’re also advising that people have flashlights, fresh batteries and a battery-powered radio on hand.

Vermont colleges have also been affected.

The University of Vermont canceled a Sunday evening convocation and a twilight induction ceremony on the college green in Burlington.

At Norwich University, upperclassmen have told to come back to campus early.

They were scheduled to begin arriving for the fall semester tomorrow and Sunday. Now the university says they’re welcome to come back today.

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