BREAKING NEWS: Police withdraw to station, power out in Ocean View and Bethany, downed trees reported
UPDATED (8:45 p.m.) Conditions in Ocean View remain the same. Reports have been received that a tornado touched down in the Lewes area and 15 homes were damaged/destroyed.
The National Guard has assigned a unit to the OV EOC. National Guard troops will be paired with OVPD officers during morning patrols.
OVPD and Millville Fire Company have just been dispatched to a fire at 39 Dorothy Circle in Ocean View. No further details available at this time./UPDATE
From Ocean View Police Chief Ken McLaughlin, 6:52 p.m.:
Winds are increasing and heavy rain fall continues. Rain started at 4 a.m. this morning, and minor flooding is occurring throughout town. In the past 30 minutes, multiple reports of downed trees have been received. Due to the poor conditions and loss of daylight, all OVPD personnel have been ordered to return to the police station.
UPDATED (6:53 p.m.) -- A widespread power outage is now being reported east of West Avenue and in Bethany Beach.
Hocker’s store at Routes 26 and 17 remains open. All police vehicles were filled to capacity with fuel at Hocker’s, prior to returning to the station.
The Delaware State Police have assigned four troopers to work out of OVPD for the duration of the storm event.
Mayor Wood and Councilman Sheeran will remain in the OVEOC overnight.
PW Director Charles McMullen, has all personnel and equipment prepared for the morning clean-up.
The Indian River Bridge closed at 4 p.m..
Indian River High School (which is serving as an emergency shelter) is housing 300 people. More are expected as the storm continues to intensify.
Despite the intense day-long rain, there is no standing water in West View. (It appears as if the recent drainage project was a success.)
Maryland News reports that to date, six deaths have been attributed to the storm. (Deaths occurred in VA and NC.)
A level 2 Driving Restriction will be in place throughout Sussex County starting at 6 p.m.