NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — Henri (Pronunciation: “ahn-REE”) hit New England this weekend and made landfall in Connecticut on Sunday.
Henri was downgraded to a tropical storm Sunday morning, according to the National Hurricane Center. Around 12:35 p.m., Tropical Storm Henri made landfall in Westerly, Rhode Island. As of 5:18 p.m., the Tropical Storm Warning for Connecticut has been lifted.
Storm Team 8 is keeping a close eye on Henri, as the National Weather Service (NWS) has issued a Hurricane Warning for New Haven, Middlesex, and New London county. Southern Connecticut is under a Storm Surge Warning. Most of the state is under a Tropical Storm Warning. The entire state is under a flood watch.
Governor Ned Lamont declared a state of emergency in advance of the storm, which will enable the state to take any actions necessary to respond and protect the people of CT. In addition, the CT State Emergency Operations Center will be partially activated by Sunday morning.
On Sunday, Gov. Lamont announced that President Biden approved his request for Connecticut to receive a presidential pre-landfall emergency declaration in advance of Tropical Storm Henri impacting the state.
Lamont requested the CT National Guard bring 200 Guardsmen to state active duty beginning Saturday morning. They will begin preparation efforts as needed for potential issues that may arise during and after the storm.
Shoreline towns and cities across Connecticut are issuing evacuation recommendations. Click here for a full list.
Strong winds and heavy rain are expected Sunday, with temps in the high 70s. Wind gusts could range from 75-90 MPH. Flash flooding is likely along with 3′ to 5′ storm surge at the shoreline. High tide hits at 9:30-11:30 a.m.
Flooding could be a major concern. Connecticut saw plenty of flash floods when Tropical Storm Elsa hit earlier this summer, and even on Thursday from the remnants of Fred. A tornado also touched down in Thompson Thursday.
Utility companies in Connecticut are working around the clock to prepare for Hurricane Henri’s arrival and the damage it will bring.
On Saturday afternoon, Eversource’s CEO said this storm is now considered a level 2, which means 50 to 69% of customers could be without power for eight to 21 days.
And United Illuminating says despite a national shortage of line crews, it was able to get the workers needed to enact its emergency plan.
Attorney General William Tong is warning residents to be vigilant of price gouging while preparing for the storm.
“Price gougers take advantage of our fear. We’re all worried about losing power for days on end, damage to our property, and the health and safety of our loved ones,” Attorney General Tong said. “Don’t let these predatory bad actors profit off your panic. We will not tolerate any profiteering off this emergency and any Connecticut consumers who observe price gouging should report it immediately to my office.”
However, not every price increase is price gouging. Some retailers may charge higher than normal processes due to being charged higher prices from suppliers and wholesalers.
Anyone who loses power can look for a cooling center here.
Anyone who suspects price gouging should file a complaint with the Office of the Attorney General online at www.dir.ct.gov/ag/complaint or call at 860-808-5318.
The American Red Cross is also preparing for the storm, getting relief and aid ready to go. The Red Cross recommends families create an evacuation plan and review it before the storm, just in case of an emergency. Also, build an emergency kit; pack water, food, first aid kit, tools, blankets, and phone chargers.
Connecticut residents are encouraged to download the state’s CTPrepares app for mobile devices.