To our friends, neighbors and customers - be prepared for Hurricane Irene

Our members will be working dilligently during this Hurricane to restore service. Residential customers should contact Verizon at 1-800-837-4966 or online at to report any service-related issue. Below are some helpful tips to help prepare you and your family for this Hurricane. The CWA Cares about our community.



FEMA Tips: Listen to local officials, know evacuation routes and have people to call who are on and off Long Island in the event you become separated from your family. 


Fill up with gas  

Following a major hurricane, some areas could be without power for extended periods. This will affect gas stations. Though you may see trees down in the middle of your street, if your office has power, you may be expected back at work. Be prepared to wait in a line at the gas station, and make sure to have a backup station in mind in case your first choice runs out.


Stock up with water 

Bottled water is key. If power lines fall into nearby water sources, many areas may be under boil-water alerts, and if you don't have power, this is tough to do. Have several cases of bottled water available in case your tap water is unsafe for drinking. Calculate two gallons per person, per day.


Canned food and canned heat 

Have your family's favorite canned foods handy in case the food in your refrigerator spoils due to lack of power. You can heat up the food using a canned Sterno to create a campfire-like cooking flame. Don't have a favorite canned food? Spaghetti-Os and other canned pastas are great for a filling meal. If you're more of a salad person, canned artichoke hearts and hearts of palm were popular in my area.


Head to a safe room

During the actual storm, it is ideal to be somewhere in your home that has no windows. If you have a two-story house, stick to the ground flood in case the storm damages your roof. Bathrooms and walk-in closets are good hurricane hideaways. Pick a room in your house and take some supplies with you.


Rearrange furniture

There's no need to redo your whole house, but if your beds and major electronics are stationed under windows, you may want to move them away in case windows are broken.


Charge electronics 

If you lose power, you'll still need a way to keep track of the news. Battery-powered radios and TVs are cheap and will get you in tune with what is going on. Also, have a phone that is completely connected to the wall, not a cordless one because those tend to die quickly when power is out. Write down important numbers before the storm in case your cellphone dies and you cannot access your address book.


Have a camera ready 

Buy a cheap, disposable camera or charge your digital camera to take photos of damage to your property following the storm. These photos are important for insurance purposes, so take pictures before cleaning anything up.


Turn down the temperature in the fridge 

Right before the storm hits, make your refrigerator temperature cooler to keep your food fresh longer. If you lose power, do not open the fridge or freezer (except to eat melting ice cream). Food should stay good for at least a few days if the fridge is not open and the temperature is cool enough. If you lose power, the rule of thumb is that as long frozen food has frost, it is good to eat.


Tie down basketball hoops, trim trees 

Tie down heavy objects near your house or cars that could fall over and cause damage. If you have a basketball hoop outside your home, lie it down on the ground and try to secure it with rope. This way, when the wind gets strong it won't fall on your home or roll into the street. Garbage cans, too. If you have any large, loose branches on the trees surrounding your property, trim them so they don't fly at your windows or roof.


Prep your patio, pool 

Make sure you bring outdoor furnishings inside, as you don't want lawn chairs hitting your house in the middle of the storm. If there is anything you can't bring inside, like a playground set, secure it to the ground with ropes. As for your pool, don't drain it. The water in your pool weighs it down, which prevents the foundation from getting damaged. As long as your pool has a working drain system, it should be fine during the hurricane.