Fair officials prepared to handle severe weather

New York State Fair

GEDDES, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Fair officials keep their eyes on the weather radar and also work closely with the National Weather Service onsite at the fairgrounds. But what happens when an umbrella isn’t enough? The staff says they have you covered.

“We go into an emergency mode at that point where we start shutting down, we start getting people inside buildings, shutting down tents, putting them on Centro buses, in the parking lots and everything to really keep people out of harm’s way,” Fair Director Troy Waffner said.

Plans for severe weather have been in place for weeks. The emergency operations center plays a big part.

No, it’s not an exhibit or building you can visit at the fair. It is a command center where sercurity, emergency personnel, and the National Weather Service coordinate.

“One of the things it does is let us know when bad weather is coming so we can notify everyone on the grounds. So if we know there is a wind storm coming, we can tell people to go inside, batten down the tents, really in an effort to keep everybody safe,” Waffner said.

Last year, rain came down quickly on August 29, 2018, and then it rained heavily a few days later, too. It’s important to be prepared before you go out.

Waffner said, “One of the biggest threats we always face is weather because weather is changing very quickly. Storms come on very quick and they leave very quick and in the five minutes they are here, they do some damage sometimes and that is what we are trying to protect against.”


For more local news, follow Josh Martin on Twitter @JoshMartinNC9

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