NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – Hampshire county is preparing for tonight’s blizzard by opening several services for the public if the power goes out. A “Winter storm warning” is in effect here in Hampshire county, as well as the three other western counties from 7:00 p.m. until 1:00 p.m. Wednesday morning.
Northampton mayor David Narkewicz declared a state of emergency ahead of the winter storm’s arrival. The city has opened its emergency operation center at the Northampton fire station, and there will be more staff at the Department of Public Works.
Mayor Narkewicz told 22News, “The Red Cross has activated the regional shelter which is located here in the city of Northampton. That’s a Hampshire County wide regional shelter. So we feel like we’re prepared, so now we have to wait, be safe and be smart.”
The Red Cross shelter will be at Smith Vocational High School and will provide cots for anyone who needs a warm place to stay the night. Hampshire county residents can arrive anytime starting at 4:00 p.m. Monday night.
The Western Massachusetts Electric Company recommends creating a survival kit which includes many items that you might need in case your power goes out. Your kit should contain a flashlight, candle, battery-operated clock, first aid kit, manual can opener, and an address book. Have water bottles and blankets, and charge your electronics.
Michael Malkovich of Northampton told 22News he feels prepared for the storm. “We’ll make sure there’s plenty of wood by the fireplace, food in the cupboard, and we’re going to sit back and relax and enjoy it.”
If your power goes out, WMECo customers should call 877-OK-WMECo, or 877-659-6326.
For storm-related emergencies in Northampton, call 413-587-1160.
For information on emergency disaster services including shelters, contact the American Red Cross at 877-287-3327.