All of Delmarva Braces for Flooding, High Winds - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

All of Delmarva Braces for Flooding, High Winds

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OCEAN CITY, MD. - Much of Delmarva is bracing for expected torrential rains over the coming days from the Nor'Easter, and possible effects from Hurricane Joaquin.

Officials in Ocean City, Maryland, say moderate to severe tidal flooding will continue in the resort community through Monday. Spokeswoman Jessica Waters says low-lying areas in the city of about 8,000 year-round residents were in with nearly five feet of water during the Friday afternoon high tide.

The flooding prompted a temporary outage to about 635 Delmarva Power customers to protect electrical equipment. Waters says many of those homes are vacant vacation properties.

The weather prompted cancellation of a surf-fishing tournament and the Offshore Powerboat Association national championships.

But it didn't deter a large number of Volkswagen tuner car enthusiasts from a weekend car show at nearby private campground. They are cruising Coastal Highway in blustery, 25 mph winds and light rain.

Waters says extra police officers were contracted for the weekend events.

In Delaware,  transportation officials have closed part of a major coastal road because of flooding.

Officials say high water has forced the closing of State Route 1 northbound and southbound between Bethany and Dewey Beach, including the bridge over the Indian River Inlet.

Northbound motorists have been advised to detour onto Route 26 westbound, then to U.S. Route 113 northbound onto Route 24 eastbound, returning to Route 1. The detour for southbound motorists is Route 24 westbound onto U.S. Route 113 southbound, to Route 26 eastbound and back to Route 1. Officials say several other roads in Kent and Sussex counties also have been closed because of flooding.

The Delaware National Guard says personnel and vehicles are ready to provide support during Hurricane Joaquin.

The Guard said in a news release that vehicles and drivers are stationed at its Georgetown Readiness Center and Kent County Emergency Operations Center. About 20 Soldiers and Airmen are on duty and another 100 on standby. The Delaware National Guard Joint Emergency Operations Center will be staffed around the clock until the event is complete.

   
Over in Virginia, Assateague State Park Ranger Adam Stachowiak said he's "sandblasted and soaking wet" as staffers prepare the park for stormy weather.

With a storm surge, Stachowiak said the ocean reached the base of the dune on the barrier island on the Atlantic Ocean by midday Friday, water was above the platform at the marina and sand had blown into the campground. The wind was steady at about 30 mph with gusts up to 50 mph. He says they've already lost a few signs to the wind.

Workers have cut power to facilities at the park and removed or secured anything that might blow or float away. Officials closed the day use area Friday morning, instead of waiting until noon as originally planned, helping to minimize risks for visitors while workers focus on preparations.

During big storms, Stachowiak says the island's famous ponies hunker down in thicker forested areas on the bay side and circle up tight together.

With forecasters expecting Hurricane Joaquin to head further east than before, they're expecting the next 24 hours to be the worst, but they are getting ready for several days of storms.

Stachowiak says, "We're planning for the worst so we don't feel like there's more we could have done."

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