Chief Fitzgerald Selected for MEMA Hurricane Preparedness Training


Police Chief Todd Fitzgerald has been chosen by MEMA (Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency) to participate in hurricane preparedness training at the National Hurricane Center in Miami, FL in 2023.  Chief Fitzgerald, who is also the Town’s Emergency Management Coordinator, was one of only two selected in Massachusetts to attend this special training program.

Chief Fitzgerald will join other emergency managers who have direct responsibilities to support evacuation decision making in coastal jurisdictions during a hurricane threat.  The training is intended to provide students with comprehensive instruction from NHC (National Hurricane Center), FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency), and USACE (US Army Corps of Engineers) specialists on how to plan for and make operational protective action decisions for hurricanes.  The course includes a tour of the NHC and a demonstration of how the NHC specialists track and forecast hurricanes and their potential impacts.  Students will also learn about hurricane hazards, how to interpret storm surge modeling and forecast products for their coastal jurisdiction, apply data and planning factors from Hurricane Evacuation Studies (HES) to inform evacuation plans, and receive instruction on the use of the HURREVAC decision support tool.

“I am grateful for the opportunity to receive this specialized training on hurricane preparedness given recent concerns over sea level rise and extreme weather conditions,” said Chief Fitzgerald, “the goal is to gain more knowledge now to better protect Manchester-by-the-Sea in the future”.

“MEMA is pleased to have nominated Chief Fitzgerald for this prestigious NHC training program,” said Acting MEMA Director Dawn Brantley.  “It is important for coastal communities to take hurricane season preparedness seriously as we continue to see the threat of coastal hazards and disasters increase.  We commend Chief Fitzgerald for his willingness to participate in this program and for leaning forward to better prepare Manchester-by-the-Sea for the 2023 hurricane season and beyond.”

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