In recent years, West Newbury has experienced a significant number of emergency situations caused by severe weather and climate conditions. These have included water shortages caused by drought; numerous power outages caused by severe storms and unusually heavy winds; heat waves; roof collapses due to very heavy, wet snowfall; flooding due to significant and intense rainfall; and outbreaks of vector-borne diseases such as Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) and Lyme. These emergency situations highlight our town’s vulnerabilities to natural hazards, and these natural hazards are expected to become more severe and more common in the coming years and decades.
Consider the impacts of such a severe event on your personal situation. For instance,
- Home systems: water well pump, septic pumping, sump pump, heat & hot water, cooking, cold food storage, lighting, etc.
- Transportation and communication: work, church, family, food and other shopping, calling for help, repairs, etc.
- Medical: medical devices, refrigeration of medicines, doctor consults, regular appointments, sensitivity to heat or cold, etc.
The purpose of this survey is to gather information from our West Newbury community regarding the vulnerabilities of our residents to these increasingly severe and frequent natural hazards. We are particularly interested in our community members’ vulnerabilities to extended power outages, since that is something that we have experienced quite often.