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[r29] Column: Weathering the Storm
Start Date: 1/9/2014 All Day
End Date: 1/9/2014
Entry Description
Weathering the Storm

As the roads begin to clear and things start getting back to normal, I would like to take some time to thank the countless Hoosiers who worked hard to keep everyone safe over the past few days. From the snow plow drivers to local and state officials to cautious motorists, everyone helped play a part in weathering this historic storm that brought temperatures to record lows.

There are many thanks to go around beginning with the accurate advance notice from local weather forecasters. Officials across the state were able to start making preparations ahead of time, and Hoosiers were able to stay indoors and out of Mother Nature’s way. Road crews began salting the roads, and snow plow crews were at the ready as soon as the storm came. Governor Pence and other local and state agencies across the state sent out updates, alerts and other messages with tips on how Hoosiers can be best prepared. Once the storm hit, all hands were on deck as agencies kept everyone informed through emails, social media, news and radio.

Locally, I was truly impressed with the cooperation and information sharing that was provided during this very dangerous storm. Thomas Sivak, the Executive Director of Hamilton County Emergency Management, coordinated several conference calls with representatives from all the agencies involved to share information and keep everyone informed.  I was grateful because in all my years as a state representative for this area I had never received this much information to help keep my constituents informed as they ask questions.

With so much snow falling in such a short amount of time, it was difficult for the Department of Transportation and local crews to stay ahead of the snow and keep roads clear. The strong winds and extremely cold temperatures made their job even more difficult, yet the crews continued working around the clock in 12 hour shifts to keep important routes as clear as possible so that emergency vehicles could continue to operate. The Department of Transportation had over 500 trucks across the state working to clear the roads.

Hoosier motorists also did their part by staying off the roads to allow road crews to do their business and by driving safely and slowly when they were on the roads. 
 
Local food banks and humanitarian organizations like the Red Cross and Good Samaritan  stepped up to help Hoosiers in need. Forty-one shelters were set up across the state with the capacity to house nearly 2,000 people in need; another 9 shelters were on standby. Families without power were offered a place to stay and food to eat. Locally, facilities were open at Carmel High School, the Fall Creek Township Building and the Hamilton County Fairgrounds.
 
The National Guard deployed guardsmen to assist local law enforcement, emergency medical services and public safety professionals in their operations. They helped stranded motorists, transported people in need and surveyed snow-covered roads.
 
Even the people who helped their neighbors in need, whether it was bringing them food or shoving their driveways – thank you. In moments like these, it takes a community-wide, even statewide, effort to make sure every Hoosier is safe and sound. This kind of historic storm doesn’t happen very often, but it showed the resiliency of the Hoosier spirit and our unwavering dedication to one another. I’m so grateful to be a part of this community and state, and I am humbled to represent all of you. Stay warm and safe travels!

-30-
Contact Information:
Name: Nicholas Goodwin
Phone: (317) 232-9831
Email: nicholas.goodwin@iga.in.gov
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Entry Type:
Press Release
Entry Category:
  • Announcements
  • IN.gov Category:
  • Public Safety
  • Tourism & Transportation
  • Agency Name
    House of Representatives Republican Caucus

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