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Severe weather threatens Sandy pollution response

Written by Nick Blenkey

sandy responseNOVEMBER 7, 2012 — As another round of severe weather approached, responders with the Hurricane Sandy Pollution Response Unified Command prepared for a winter storm to impact operations.

Responders conducted operational risk management to assess any hazards presented by the storm and take appropriate precautions.

“I am extremely proud of the work the Coast Guard and our partner agencies,” said Cmdr. Eric Doucette, Federal On Scene Coordinator for the Hurricane Sandy Pollution Response. “As soon as it is safe for our teams to be on the water, we will be back out to reassess the threat of pollution and continue our removal operations.”

The severe weather will require cleanup operations to be scaled back while the conditions are unsafe for responders. However, as soon as conditions permit the response will continue to aggressively respond to the pollution threats.

The most important objective in the operation is to safely identify, reduce and remove the environmental impacts that have resulted due to Hurricane Sandy.

Coast Guard personnel from across the country are reporting to support affected communities in the tri-state region. They are working together with federal, state and local partners to ensure the success of the response.
Agencies working within the unified command are:
U.S. Coast Guard
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
New York Department of Environmental Conservation
New York City Department of Environmental Protection
Local governments in impacted areas

The Hurricane Sandy Pollution Response is requesting any person who sees pollution to contact the National Response Center at (800) 424-8802. These reports will help responders identify, reduce and remove these environmental threats.

Any oiled wildlife should be reported to the Tri-State Bird Research and Rescue at (302) 737-9543. Oiled wildlife should only be handled by trained professionals for the safety of the wildlife and public.

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