ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (CBS) – Local, state, and federal agencies have been meeting regularly to coordinate efforts on a emergency plan should a hurricane hit the Jersey shore this summer.

If there were a mandatory hurricane evacuation order given while you were here on the Atlantic City boardwalk, a carefully orchestrated plan would go into effect.  Tourists and residents would be told to leave, and the casinos — and the money — would be secured.

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(Photo by John McDevitt)

“Our evacuation is taking place at the same time Cape May County’s evacuation is taking place, Ocean and Monmouth counties,” predicts Vincent Jones, the emergency management coordinator for Atlantic County.  “So you would have multiple counties evacuating at the same time, some of us using the same roadway infrastructure to evacuate our residents. So the timing and coordination has to be there.”

In the event of an emergency, Jones says, local municipalities work jointly with county and state officials.

“When you are in your car during an evacuation, that’s probably not the time you want to be listening to music. You would want to have the radio tuned, listening to what the officials are telling you,” Jones told KYW Newsradio.

The New Jersey Office of Emergency Management would open a giant support room (it looks kind of like NASA’s Mission Control) inside the Regional Operation Intelligence Center in West Trenton, NJ.

“And we’d begin to respond — either out in the field or a combination of field response and then beginning to populate the state emergency operations center by those representatives from state and federal entities that would need to be drawn into the response activities and recovery operations,” says New Jersey State Police major Dennis McNulty (below), the commanding officer of the ROIC.

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(NJ State Police Maj. Dennis McNulty, inside the Regional Operation Intelligence Center. Photo by John McDevitt)


Meanwhile, New Jersey officials are urging residents to sign up for programs like “NJ Alert,” the state’s mass text and e-mail emergency notification system, and for the special needs registry for those who would have difficulty evacuating on their own.

Reported by John McDevitt, KYW Newsradio 1060

Audio Podcasts:

Part 1: How Vulnerable Is The NJ Shore? Mike DeNardo reports:

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Part 2: Recalling Previous Devastation Mike DeNardo reports:

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Part 3: New Building Codes and Standards John McDevitt reports:

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Part 4: Evacuate! John McDevitt reports:

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