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Posted on: May 30, 2017

STORM DAMAGE - AFTERNOON UPDATE 5.30.17

Shelby County Health Department

Food Safety 

  • Throw out ALL refrigerated, perishable foods if power was out for more than four (4) hours. Perishable foods include meat, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy products (milk, cheese, yogurt) and leftovers.
  • If the freezer door remained closed, and your power was restored in less than 24 hours (or 48 hours for a full freezer), your items may be safe. Check each package of food to determine its safety. You can’t rely on appearance or odor. If the food still contains ice crystals or is 40° F or below, it is safe to refreeze or cook. If there are no ice crystals, you will need to cook and consume or discard the items.

 

Prepare for Hot Weather

  • If you are outside, or in your home without power, for an extended time, take the following precautions:
    • Drink 2-4 glasses of cool, nonalcoholic fluids each hour.
    • Wear lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing when outdoors.
    • Limit your physical activity to morning and evening hours.
    • Start slowly and pick up the pace gradually.
    • Rest often in shady areas.
    • Protect yourself by wearing a wide-brimmed hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen of SPF 15 or higher.
  • If you don’t have power in your home, consider visiting a shopping mall, public library, or community center to keep cool during daytime hours. An emergency shelter is also available at the Orange Mound Community Center.
  • Take extra precautions with those at higher risk for developing heat related illnesses:
    • People 65 and older
    • Infants and young children
    • People who are physically ill
  • Watch for signs of Heat Exhaustion:
    • Fatigue
    • Weakness/Fainting
    • Nausea/Vomiting
    • Headache/Dizziness
    • Myalgia
    • Muscle cramps
  • Recognize signs of Heat Stroke:
    • Extremely high body temperature
    • Red, hot, and dry skin (no sweating)
    • Rapid, strong pulse
    • Throbbing headache
    • Dizziness
    • Nausea

MLGW

  • 63,988 MLGW customers are without power.
  • MLGW crews are being assisted by 70 utility companies to help restore power.
  • Report problems to 1-800-268-8648.


Emergency Shelter

  • 25 people are staying at the American Red Cross shelter in Memphis at the Orange Mound Community Center, 2572 Park Avenue.
  • Caseworkers will assist storm victims there and at the American Red Cross office at 1399 Madison Avenue.
  • For shelter transportation, call (901) 636-2525.

Road Hazards

  • Many traffic signals are out in the Memphis area. Motorists should treat those intersections as Four-Way stops.
  • Memphis Public Works crews have cleared 90 calls about roadway debris. Twenty (20) contracted crews are assisting Memphis Public Works to remove debris from roads in many neighborhoods including Frayser, Whitehaven, Fox Meadows and Midtown.
  • In the unincorporated areas, downed wires still block the intersection of Macon at Reid Hooker in Fisherville.

Tree Limb Removal

  • Memphis citizens should expect delays.
  • Public works crews are still clearing debris from streets.

 

Disaster Assistance

  • The request for a federal disaster declaration is a joint process between local, state, federal officials.
  • The process begins with a local and state damage assessment to see if damages and impacts in the county meet federally-established per capita loss thresholds, at both the county and state levels.
  • Shelby County’s per capita loss threshold is $3.348 million and the state’s loss threshold is $9.074 million.
    • Both of these loss amounts need to be met or surpassed in order for the federal government to consider whether a federal disaster declaration would apply.
    • If both thresholds are surpassed, then the Governor can request FEMA to conduct a Preliminary Damage Assessment to basically verify the state and local damage assessment figures.
    • If FEMA verifies the amounts as accurate, the Governor can then request a federal disaster declaration.
  • Right now local and state officials are gathering damage estimates from Shelby County as well as a number of other counties in East Tennessee who have significant damage from the weekend storms.
  • Because of all the ongoing damage assessments across Tennessee, it may take many days to arrive at a total and to see if the impacted counties, Shelby included, and the state surpass the federal loss thresholds.
  • If a federal declaration is granted, assistance for this storm most likely will come in the form of reimbursements to state and local governments, and certain private, nonprofit organizations for emergency work and the repair or replacement of disaster-damaged facilities. The categories of help to state and local governments can include work or repairs for debris removal, emergency protective measures, roads and bridges, water control facilities, buildings and equipment, utilities, and recreational facilities.
  • Other federal assistance may also be available from FEMA or other federal entities. However, the granting of any federal assistance still hinges on the completion of a local and state damage assessment, and then a Preliminary Damage Assessment on the part of FEMA.

Check daily on those who live alone

  • Give special attention to the elderly and the disabled.

Electricity Hazards

  • Stay away from powerlines.
  • Make sure electrical systems or appliances damaged by the storm are inspected by a qualified, licensed professional.

Generator Safety

  • Prevent carbon monoxide poisoning - Only use generators outside, more than 20 feet away from your home, doors, and windows. Never use grills, camp stoves or other gasoline, propane, natural gas or charcoal-burning devices inside a home, garage, basement, or any partially enclosed area.
  • Opening doors and windows or using fans will not prevent carbon monoxide (CO) buildup in the home. Although CO can’t be seen or smelled, it can rapidly lead to full incapacitation and death. Even if you cannot smell exhaust fumes, you may still be exposed to CO. If you start to feel sick, dizzy, or weak while using a generator, get to fresh air RIGHT AWAY - DO NOT DELAY.





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