Winter Storm Preparedness

A winter storm is forecast for southern California beginning tonight and continuing through Saturday, December 13. Active weather advisories include a high wind warning, flood watch, and high surf advisory for various cities throughout the area. The UCI Police Department Emergency Services Division is monitoring the situation in conjunction with other campus and local emergency personnel, and Facilities Management staff are preparing the campus for the storm.

At this time, there are no plans to cancel classes or suspend campus operations, but be prepared for travel delays. If the situation worsens and impacts the campus, emergency information will be made available via www.uci.edu, zotALERT emergency text messaging, the campus emergency information line 866-IRV-NEWS, and ZotRadio AM 1690.

For weather updates, please visit http://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?CityName=Irvine&state=CA&site=SGX&lat=33.6488&lon=-117.841#.VIn4Nsma9bw

As the first significant storm of the winter, this is a good opportunity to review storm preparedness information and resources. During any storm event, it is important to take steps for your own safety:
— Use caution when outdoors during high wind and thunderstorm activity. Be aware of overhead hazards such as tree limbs and power lines.
— Never approach a downed wire, even if it is not actively arcing or sparking. Report all downed wires to 911.
— Allow extra time during commute periods to account for wet roadways, heavy traffic, and accidents. Drive cautiously and leave extra space when following to allow for increased braking distances in wet conditions. Remember that California state law requires headlights to be on during all periods of rain.
— Make sure you have a full tank of fuel to avoid running out during heavy traffic.
— Do not attempt to drive or walk through flooded areas.
— Bicyclists and motorcyclists should use lights and wear reflective rain gear or vests to ensure that they are visible.
— Take steps to prepare your home. Ensure that your gutters are clear and that any exterior furniture or other items that might become airborne in heavy winds are properly secured.
— If you have low-lying areas on your property, take steps to mitigate flooding by using sandbags.
— Have flashlights and lanterns available in the event of a power outage, and be sure that they have fresh batteries.
— Never use charcoal or propane fueled devices such as grills, heaters, or lanterns inside. These present both a fire hazard and a risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Additional preparedness information can be found at www.police.uci.edu under Emergency Management.

Paul Henisey
Chief of Police
UCI Police Department