Washington Police Chief Urges Residents to Stay Indoors

Washington Police Chief Cathy Lanier Tells Residents to Stay Indoors

VOA's Michael Lipin's talked to Washington police chief Cathy Lanier in Washington and asked her about the department's efforts to keep residents safe, as Hurricane Sandy began to intensify Monday afternoon.

LIPIN: "How are local authorities dealing with the situation today?"

LANIER: "Right now things are just starting to pick up to a point where we're going to start to see some issues. We have all of our police units out monitoring various locations that we anticipate there may be some standing water, tree-down issues. So far we have just a couple of roadways where we see increasing water. And we've had just one tree come down so far. But I think the next 12 hours is just going to get a lot more dicey.

LIPIN: "How does preparing for this storm compare to challenges your department has faced in the past?"

LANIER: We have a lot of advance notice on this, that's always good. Since we're an emergency agency anyway, preparing for things like this is something we do on a regular basis, so we're at an advantage I think, especially here in Washington, D.C., because so many things come so quickly. But coordination among all the agencies is critical right now."

LIPIN: "Have residents been heeding the warnings of authorities?"

LANIER:  "Yeah for the most part ... But I think everybody's trying to get their last minute provisions in, and some food and things like that. But I think in the next couple of hours this one's really going to pick up, and when this one picks up, trees are going to start coming down, we're going to have some flooding on the roadways, and you're really putting yourself in jeopardy and making our job a lot harder if you're out here."

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