PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – New Governor Gina Raimondo and Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza are getting ready for a huge snow storm that will hit the area Monday.
The newly-elected officials say they’re prepared to make the right decisions at the right time. On Sunday there was a clear blue sky for Rhode Island; a calm before what could be a historic blizzard.
“My message to Rhode Islanders is to get ready,” said Gov. Raimondo.
For Raimondo and Elorza, this will be their first test of leading Rhode Island and Providence, respectively through what’s being forecast as a winter weather wipe-out.
“The team is on the ground. They’ve been working today, they’ll be working tomorrow and Rhode Island is going to be safe,” said Gov. Raimondo.
She says she wants to track the storm before issuing travel bans. Raimondo is meeting with a variety of department heads from Emergency Management, National Grid, The National Guard and State Police to name a few around 11 a.m. Monday.
Her message is to not be afraid, but to get ready and prepare.
In regards to how Rhode Island is doing funds-wise, the Governor says the state is prepared to tackle this storm. “We’ll be fine. We’ll have the salt, we’ll have the sand and we’ll have the trucks,” she said.
Elorza also said he and his team are hard at work keeping an eye on the upcoming storm, “We’ve been monitoring this storm for the past 24-48 hours. Keeping a very close eye on it… We’ve been in contact with all of our department directors.”
The mayor planned to meet with all of his departments on Sunday night to determine school closings and street parking bans. Elorza also said that if necessary, the city could have 100 pieces of equipment on the streets at one time during the storm.
Cranston Mayor Allan Fung also stressed the need for preparedness.
“(We’re) making sure that the blades are sharpened, all of the vehicles are ready. We’re contacting the outside contractors, as well,” said Mayor Fung. “We’re also going to be calling out for some heavier equipment — the payloaders — we’re also looking for alternate fuel sources too, just to be prepared.”
Raimondo will hold a second update on the matter slated for 4 p.m. at the Emergency Management Agency in Cranston.
The Emergency Operations Center for Providence will be open in case of power outages and assistance with snow removal. The phone number is (401) 680-8080.