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UPDATE: Darien Coastal Evacuation

Darien is ordering a "mandatory" evacuation of residents along the shoreline (although anyone can refuse) as of 7 p.m. Sunday; schools will be closed Monday, Tuesday; Town Hall will be closed Monday.

Update 4:02 p.m.:

Darien emergency management officials have released a map of the town showing where flooding can be expected during a storm such as Hurricane Sandy.

Areas colored light green, dark green, yellow and purple (or brown) on the map are prone to flooding during Category 4 storms.

"We have been told to expect flooding equivalent to a CAT 4 [Category 4] storm due to the uncertainity of the combining of the storm systems approaching our region," Darien Emergency Director Marc McEwan wrote in a message sent with the map.

(The map is attached to this article as a PDF and in a series of numbered images taken from the map, starting with the key and then continuing with map enlargements from west to east.)

All the areas prone to flooding that are shown on the map are south of the New Haven Line railroad tracks. Other areas also commonly flood in storms, including Heights Road in downtown Noroton Heights.

Update 3:08 p.m.:

First Selectman Jayme Stevenson announced in a 2:59 p.m. email:

"All decisions that have been made regarding storm response, evacuation recommendations and sheltering are made collectively by the members of our Emergency Management Committee based on the information we receive from a variety of sources, the most important of which is the State of Connecticut Emergency Operations Center whom we speak to several times of the day. 

"They provide what we must use as the most up to date storm information.  We do not use the Weather Channel! Gov. [Dannel] Malloy has been particularly vocal in his concern that towns in our area ([he] specifically mentioned Darien) take this storm extremely seriously.

"I sincerely hope that the storm does not hit as hard as our professional advisors are reporting, but at the Chief Elected Official, I must make the best decisions for the safety of all our residents and our emergency responders."

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See also: Hurricane Sandy News Center for Darien, a central spot for Darien Patch's coverage of the expected storm. You can bookmark the page and quickly find all of our coverage, organized to help you get to it quicker and easier.

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Update 3:03 p.m.:

Darien's "mandatory" evacuation is not mandatory in the normal use of that word.

"We certainly can't force people out of their homes," First Selectman Jayme Stevenson said in an interview this afternoon. "It's not forced. We use the word 'mandatory' so people will take this extremely seriously."

And the situation for town residents along the shoreline, and to a somewhat lesser degree all across town, Connecticut and the East Coast, according to officials, is extremely serious.

"The storm is likely to be, in Gov. [Dannel] Malloy's words, more impactful than any storm any of us have ever lived through," Stevenson said.

Update 1:30 p.m.:

First Selectman Jayme Stevenson issued the following announcement, emailed at 1:24 p.m.:

Hurricane Sandy is predicted to begin significantly impacting the Town of Darien as a category 3 hurricane by midnight Sunday night.  Hurricane force winds will hit our area by 3pm Monday and continue at hurricane strength through midnight Monday night.  The impact of Sandy is expected to be potentially catastrophic and create life threatening conditions. Official warnings must be taken seriously.

Flooding along coastal areas and rivers is imminent through 4 tide cycles beginning at midnight tonight.  Long term power outages are expected. 

Darien is calling for mandatory evacuations of all coastal areas by 7pm this evening including Noroton Bay, Tokeneke, Contentment Island, Five Mile River Road, Holly Pond, Delafield Island, Tokeneke in the vicinity of the Five Mile River.  Record high tides will result in all inland river areas to flood.  During peak storm conditions, emergency personnel may not be able to get to you.  Seek shelter with family or friends if possible.  When evacuating, remember to bring all items for personal health and safety as well as important documents and insurance papers. 

Darien Public Schools will be closed Monday and Tuesday.  Keep your children safely indoors during this storm and during critical recovery efforts thereafter.

Darien Town Hall will be closed on Monday and all essential emergency response personnel are fully engaged.

We are asking all non-essential community organizations to consider cancelling all events and activities during the storm and through safe restoration. 

An emergency shelter will be open Sunday evening at 7pm at the Darien High School.  Please bring all necessary medications and items for personal comfort to last for at least 36 hours.  We are seeking shelter volunteers.  Please contact me at JStevenson@darienct.gov to offer your service.

Regional shelters at Brian McMahon High School in Norwalk and Stamford High School will be open and available for Darien residents beginning at 5pm today. 

Power outages are anticipated to be prolonged due to unsafe conditions for recovery.  Some people may experience outages in advance of peek storm impact as sub stations may be de-energized as utility assets become at risk.  

A limited supply of sandbags will be available at the Transfer Station today beginning at 1pm.  Please bring shovels to fill your own sandbags.

Please utilize 911 calling service for emergency purposes only.  Power outages should be reported directly to the CL&P call center at 1-800-286-2000.

Prepare early and stay safe.  Thank you.

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See also: Hurricane Sandy News Center for Darien, a central spot for Darien Patch's coverage of the expected storm. You can bookmark the page and quickly find all of our coverage, organized to help you get to it quicker and easier.

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Original article:

Darien is ordering a mandatory evacuation of homes in certain areas along the shoreline, First Selectman Jayme Stevenson said this afternoon.

The exact areas of the evacuation are about to be announced in a Code Red Alert to be sent out shortly. Darien Patch will have details as they become available.

Darien Public Schools have announced all schools will be closed Monday and Tuesday.

Town Hall will be closed on Monday, Stevenson said.

Update: 1:10 p.m.: The town is about to announce the 7 p.m. opening of an emergency shelter in Darien, Stevenson said.


April and Gary Lyon October 28, 2012 at 05:48 PM
Where exactly around Holly Pond? We live on Beach Drive, not directly on the pond.
David Gurliacci (Editor) October 28, 2012 at 07:52 PM
I hope the maps now attached to the article will help. First Selectman Jayme Stevenson said parts of Beach Drive close to the pond could be in danger of flooding. It would be best to check the maps. The PDF file is a little large (7MB) and may be slow to upload, but enlarged images from the map are easier to read, and you can refer to the key, also on one image.
Joe Pankowski October 29, 2012 at 01:16 AM
...thanks for breaking the map down into smaller ones, David. Very helpful.
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Jacquie October 29, 2012 at 01:12 PM
These maps are very helpful. Nice to be able to see detail. Thanks.

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