After going through Tropical Storm Irene and a freak October snowstorm last year, the Town of Berlin officials feel as confident as they can as the residents of town await the full effects of Hurricane Sandy.
"For better of worse last year's crazy weather put us in a better place to be prepared for this storm," Berlin Mayor Adam Salina said. "We are better skilled at logistics and we're ready but we will see how the storm plays out."
Last year the Emergency Operations Center was at the Berlin Fire Department on the Berlin Turnpike and will be there again this year. McGee Middle School will also be the first choice for an emergency shelter as it was last year.
"We haven't opened the EOC yet and haven't opened the shelter yet but we probably will at some point," Salina said. "If we do open the EOC, we will have a member of most of the town departments at the EOC. We have been in contact with CL&P, Comcast and the National Guard who could help us keep our pump stations going if we need generators. We feel pretty good about where we are."
Salina, who has three daughters shook his head when asked about the possibility of asking children not to Trick or Treat for the second year in a row.
"It's just so odd sitting here buying batteries and has and having Halloween candy on the candy that might not get handed out," he said. "We told the kids last year that it was a 'once in a lifetime' storm and you'd never see that again where you didn't have Halloween but here we are again. All you can do is prepare for the worst and hope for the best. One of the things I would urge people to do is to charge any of their technological devices in advance of the storm. If we have to open the emergency shelter and if the Library has power, we will open again as a charging station.
"My biggest hope is that all the dead trees and limbs came down in last year's storm and the efforts of CL&P with their trimming program keeps the limbs away from the power lines."
CL&P may use Sage Park as a staging area depending on where power goes out.
Ton Manager Denise McNair said she is confident.
"We're in pretty good shape, as good a shape as we possibly can be with a major storm coming in," McNair said. "(EOC Commander) Matt Odishoo and I will be in contact every hour or every two hours at least because we will continually get updates every couple of hours from the state. As the day progresses and we see how things play out we will update Berlin Patch and really depend on Patch to get the word out about schools, and emergency shelter spots
"Last year we lost power at the Town Hall for one day so we will try to keep the Ton Hall open. If not we will operate out of the EOC at the firehouse. As they say 'stay tuned.'"
Berlin schools closed Monday but not Tuesday as some surrounding towns did. Trash pick-up is still on for Monday but the rest of the week will depend on the severity of the storm.
Berlin High School Athletics
The boys and girls soccer teams were able to finish their regular seasons Sunday in a doubleheader at Plainville.
The boys tied Plainville and finished the season 9-4-3. The girls beat Plainville 2-1 on two goals by Bianca Jacques to improve to 10-3-3. They will now await pairings for the state tournament.
The volleyball team, 12-6 on the season, was scheduled to play in the CCC Tournament but that is up in the air right now. The state volleyball pairings will come out later this week as well.
The girl's cross country team qualified for the State Open and is scheduled to run in that race Saturday.
The football team is not scheduled to until Friday night and the weather should be clear of the area by then.
"The timing could be worse," Berlin Athletic Director Dan Scavone said. "We are in pretty good shape and the CIAC was proactive in allowing games on Sunday and more than the allowed number of games in a week. They were not going to extend the date to qualify like last year. This year it will be Thursday and that's it."