Amid other activity at the on Friday morning, Ken and Sue Berta worked to deflate and tie up an inflatable dinghy from their boat. It was just part of their second day of preparations in advance of Hurricane Irene, which is this weekend.
“Anything of value’s coming off the boat,” said Sue.
The upstate New York couple were taking all personal belongings and valuables off the boat, removing the sail, and bringing the vessel itself to the more sheltered area of Shaw’s Cove. Ken said they also took precautions with Hurricane Earl, which brought rain and wind to the region as a tropical storm last year.
“There’s a lesson there for the future: have good insurance, make your preparations early,” he said.
At , co-owner Pete Bergamo said the storage yard slots are filling up fast and keeping.
“We had maybe half a dozen guys and a dozen volunteers working 12-hour days,” he said.
Bergamo said boats in harbors at risk of storm effects should be moved to safer areas. He said if owners are not able to move their boats, sailboats should extend their mooring scopes and pack in the sails, and owners should double or triple the lines to avoid damage to either the boat or dock.
Ron Prescott, who assists the owner of the with operations there, said things have been comparatively quiet there. He said the marina is in a sheltered cover and further protected from winds by the building and other sturdy structures around the site.
“A lot of people work, so they don’t come down until later,” he said.
Prescott advised boat owners to leave lines slack to account for tidal surges. He said lines that are too taut could either snap or pull out the pylon the boat is tied to.
A worker at , who declined to give his name, said boaters should secure their gear and remove their boat from the water before the storm arrives. He also gave advice for weathering the storm in general, including keeping your vehicle fueled up and having a supply of food available.
“Make sure you’ve got at least an extra roll of toilet paper,” he said.
Gov. Dannel Malloy has declared a state of emergency in advance of the storm, giving him the ability to order evacuations, bring civil preparedness forces into action, and take other actions to address potential dangers brought by the hurricane. The Connecticut Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection issued an update at 12:30 p.m. today stating that Hurricane Irene is expected to make landfall near Norwalk, some 80 miles west of New London, at 10 a.m. on Sunday as a Category I hurricane.