Lincoln County EMA

FEMA Corps to prepare Lincoln County for emergencies

ARC helps many more in Lincoln County
Tue, 08/07/2018 - 2:15pm

A group of young people volunteering for FEMA Corps are working at Lincoln County Emergency Management Agency to plan emergency pods.

Group leader Alexandra Tontisakis said Maine’s greatest natural disaster threats are major hurricanes, but that wind storms, ice storms and wildfires could also be serious problems.

“We expect everyone to be prepared to be on their own for 72 hours,” she said. She said Mainers should provide themselves enough food to last three days, and at least three gallons of water per day per person in the household. Other emergency items, such as cooking fuel, alternative heat and alternative lighting, such as oil lamps or candles, are also essential.  “If the power goes out for an extended period of time, you need these things to be prepared. But after three days, you may need fresh food and water, and that’s where the pods come in.”

If power isn’t expected back for a long time such as Puerto Rico has experienced, some pod units may also contain generators, she said.

The group will establish central locations for pods on public land, such as schools, recycling centers and town offices. FEMA Corps members are whittling down a list of 22 possible sites to five and several back up sites. They have already helped Sagadahoc County prepare.

In the event of an emergency, FEMA materials will be sent from Boston to Augusta, and then distributed to the counties. Each county will have to move materials from some central location to the various pod sites.

Lt. Rand Maker said the Addiction Resource Center is helping a great deal more people than had previously been reported. Until last month, ARC’s diversion numbers reflected only those people who came to ARC from the justice system, such as those on probation. A more accurate read is about 114 at any given time,  largely due to police chiefs around the county buying in,  and the one-stop nature of the Sheriff’s Department program, he said. “Even though our set-up is not ideal, when people come in, they can touch base with probation and the sheriff’s office, as well as get help through ARC.”

Two more towns – Waldoboro and Bristol – renewed their animal control officer contracts, and changes were made to show ACOs don’t address wildlife in residential areas, except if an animal appears rabid or otherwise ill. People with a wildlife issue need to contact game wardens or the Department of Agriculture, depending on the issue, County Administrator Carrie Kipfer said. Commissioners agreed to buy a 2018 Dodge Charger, and authorized grants to replace tasers and enforce underage drinking laws.

The courthouse will have chimney repair. Commissioners approved seeking more information from low bidder All Season Brick and Stone of Topsham to determine if they have the proper insurance and are bonded.

Gov. Paul LePage and Attorney General Janet Mills agreed to fund outstanding Assistant District Attorney positions, including a vacancy in Lincoln County, Kipfer said.