Preparing for Hurricane Irene

Aug. 25, 2011

The National Weather Service (NWS) has forecast a Flash Flood Watch (not Irene related) through this evening for most of the National Capital region, including Fairfax County, as well as a Severe Thunderstorm Watch until 9 p.m. for Fairfax County. More information.

Hurricane Irene's Potential Impact in Fairfax County

The National Weather Service says that Hurricane Irene should move through the Fairfax County area beginning Saturday evening, Aug. 27. Information will be available at the Fairfax County website and the county's new emergency blog. You can also follow us on Facebook ( and Twitter (

There is a potential for strong winds, wind gusts and flash flooding in low-lying areas. Residents may want to move or secure outdoor furniture and other items. There are no evacuation orders in effect. Residents who live in low-lying areas should be ready to evacuate ahead of the storm. Listen to local TV and radio stations for instructions. If an evacuation is ordered for your area, take your emergency supplies. Fairfax County will open shelters if they are needed and in areas that are safe for residents.

 Emergency Management Coordinator Dave McKernan: Preparing for Hurricane Irene

What Should Residents Be Doing Now?

  • Sign up for emergency text alerts from Fairfax County's Community Emergency Alert Network (CEAN). Alerts can be sent to any or all technology devices: email account (work, home, other); cellphone (text message costs may apply. Frequently asked questions.
  • Learn about basic steps to prepare for hurricanes and other disasters.
  • Check or restock personal, home, and office emergency preparedness kits.
  • Stay tuned to local TV and radio stations for the most current information for your area.
  • Plan to be self-sustaining for at least three days — have food that doesn't need refrigeration and one gallon of water per person per day. Have a battery-powered and/or hand-crank radio and extra batteries ready in case power goes out so you can hear weather information and instructions from officials. Fully charge mobile phones, PDAs, handheld devices, satellite phones, and laptop computers. Charge spare batteries if available.
  • Review your family emergency plan. If you don't have a plan, get a Make a Plan worksheet.

After the Storm

  • The Virginia Bureau of Insurance has specially trained staff who can help consumers with their disaster-related insurance questions or problems.  For more information, contact the Bureau of Insurance at 804-371-9185 (Property and Casualty Division) or 804-371-9691 (Life and Health Division) or toll-free at 1-877-310-6560.  People with hearing or speech impairments may call through the SCC's Telecommunications Device for the Deaf and hard of hearing (TDD) at 804-371-9206.  Correspondence may be mailed to the Bureau of Insurance at P.O. Box 1157, Richmond, VA 23218.
  • The aftermath of severe storm damage often results in an increase in consumer complaints resulting from contractor fraud or shoddy repairs by unlicensed contractors. Fairfax County's Consumer Affairs Branch offers tips to protect yourself.

Contact Fairfax County: Phone, Email or Twitter | Main Address: 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax, VA 22035
Technical Questions: Web Administrator

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