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Ocean City Issues Mandatory Evacuation Order Starting Sunday

All barrier island and Delaware Bay communities in Cape May County must evacuate on Oct. 28.

With a powerful storm currently expected to make landfall somewhere near Ocean City early on Tuesday and possibly bring record flooding, emergency management officials are calling for a mandatory evacuation of the island starting on Sunday.

"After conferring with state officials Friday morning, the county’s position and the state’s recommendation is that there will be voluntary evacuation of the barrier islands and Delaware Bay communities tomorrow (Saturday, Oct. 27) and mandatory evacuation on Sunday (Oct. 28)," Cape May County Emergency Management Director Gerald Thornton said in a statement posted on the county's website Friday evening.

"However, if the storm direction intensifies or changes we will modify this directive," he said.

Ocean City Business Administrator Mike Dattilo confirmed that local officials would issue the same directive to Ocean City residents and property owners.

He said further details on the evacuation and shelters would be released on Saturday morning.

But Dattilo confirmed that access to all roads in Ocean City would be unrestricted on Saturday, and residents are encouraged to secure their properties in advance of the evacution.

He said roads and the causeways will be restricted at some point on Sunday.

Ocean City last ordered a mandatory evacuation as what was then Hurricane Irene approached the island in August 2011. That order came at the height of the summer tourist season and was the first time that Ocean City had been evacuated since Hurricane Gloria in 1985.

The Ocean City Office of Emergency Management issued the following release on Friday evening:

The Ocean City Office of Emergency Management continues to advise residents, visitors and property owners to closely monitor weather conditions and forecasts to stay informed about the possible effects from Hurricane Sandy.

Recent information received from the National Weather Service indicate that it is  now a certainty that this storm will affect our area during the Sunday, October 28 through Tuesday, October 30, timeframe with very high winds, heavy rain and major beach erosion and coastal flooding. The seriousness of these affects will depend on the exact track and timing of the storm. 

You are advised to complete preparations to protect yourself, your family and your property by the end of the day on Saturday.  Secure all loose items on and around your property or bring them inside. 

Access to Ocean City for those who need to secure properties will be maintained throughout the day on Saturday.  Access to Ocean City is likely to be prohibited at a time to be determined on Sunday.

Please check www.ocnj.us and Ocean City’s Government Access Channel 2 for further updates.



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Marty October 26, 2012 at 11:20 PM
"Cape May County Emergency Management Director Gerald Thornton" What??? Isn't he a freeholder, there was another guy who replaced Frank McCall!! This county is for the birds.
Ellen October 26, 2012 at 11:27 PM
Here we go again. We stay through Irene last year but somehow this storm seems more menacing OR am I just getting smarter?
DaveK October 27, 2012 at 01:02 AM
Getting smarter? I ignored the first two storms around 1991-1992. First two- no damage. Third one I ignored. Third one = 8" of water on the first floor of 300 Third Street, my office. Prepare my friend
Marty October 27, 2012 at 11:28 AM
Notice our rather small governor is nowhere in sight. Still campaigning for his eventual presidential bid??
Eleanor October 27, 2012 at 11:29 AM
I have been going to a hurricane site here http://www.hurricanecity.com It seems to have the most accurate and least hysterical tracking of the storm. This is important for people who have evacuation issues like bedridden people (Wesley Manor or home bound) or pets.
nelson amey IV October 27, 2012 at 11:44 AM
Thorton is the freeholder director of the OEM and Marty Pagliughi is the coordinator who replaced McCall
OC October 27, 2012 at 06:03 PM
8th & west Superfresh closing; being taken over by Village shopRite


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