By Joseph Domelowicz Jr.
A vicious April Nor’easter landed in eastern Massachusetts on Sunday, bringing torrential rains and extremely high tides to the coastline of Winthrop on Sunday night and Monday morning.
According to Winthrop Town Manager Rick White, the town’s emergency response managers met regularly throughout the weekend in preparation for the storm and the Winthrop town council was kept abreast of the planned response and conditions throughout the storm.
Fire Chief Joseph “Larry” Powers, who also serves as the town’s Chief of Emergency Operations contacted officials from the Massachusetts Emergemcy Management Association (MEMA) on Saturday, and also conducted meetings with officials from the National Weather Service both before and during the storm as the planned for the possibilty of flooding and street closings associated with the unusually high tides and heavy rains.
Flooding on Shirley Street did make that road impassable in parts, and during Monday’s morning high tide, access to Point Shirley was limited to emergency vehicles. However, town officials did station an ambulance and other emergency response vehicles on and near Point shirley, to be able to answer any calls for help that were needed there.
Additionally, Shore Drive was closed by the town shortly before the 11 a.m. high tide and Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) officials also closed the Winthrop Parkway, across Short beach from Revere, because waves crashing over the beach walls there made that road impassable as well.
Town Manager White said on Monday that the latest update from the National Weather Service is that the high tides for the next four days could be problematic for the town of Winthrop.
The National Guard has lent the town two 2 and 1/2 ton trucks and town hall is encouraging people on Shore Drive to leave.