National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

The Town of Ulster, NY and National Weather Service (NWS) in Albany, NY have partnered to install five Turn Around Don’t Drown™ signs in various locations along the Esopus Creek where floodwaters are known to inundate the roadways. As part of 2014 Flood Safety Awareness Week, these signs were unveiled on Wednesday March 19th, 2014 on Farm to Market Rd (off Sawkill Rd near the Thruway Bridge) which is one of the sign locations. The other four signs have been placed on Brabrant Rd, Dogwood St, Sandy Rd and Esopus Ave. A limited number of these signs were distributed nationally through the National Weather Service's "Turn Around, Don't Drown™" campaign to educate people about the hazards of driving a vehicle or walking through flood waters.

Flooding is the 2nd leading cause of weather related fatalities in the U.S. (behind heat). On average, flooding claims the lives of 89 people each year.  Most of these deaths occur in motor vehicles when people attempt to drive through flooded roadways.  Many other lives are lost when people walk into flood waters.  This happens because people underestimate the force and power of water, especially when it is moving.  The good news is most flooding deaths are preventable with the right knowledge.

Just six inches of fast-moving water can knock over an adult. Only eighteen inches of flowing water can carry away most vehicles, including large SUVs. It is impossible to tell the exact depth of water covering a roadway or the condition of the road below the water. This is especially true at night when your vision is more limited.  It is never safe to drive or walk through flood waters. Any time you come to a flooded road, walkway, or path, follow this simple rule: Turn Around Don’t Drown™.

These Town of Ulster Turn Around Don’t Drown™ signs were installed as part of the National Weather Service’s National Flood Safety Awareness Week, which is March 16-22, 2014. More information about flood hazards can be found at http://www.nws.noaa.gov/floodsafety/. This year is the 10th anniversary of the NWS Turn Around Don’t Drown™ campaign; more information about the campaign can be found at http://tadd.weather.gov/. Water and weather forecasts from the Albany, NY National Weather Service can be found at www.weather.gov/albany.

Town of Ulster Turn Around Don't Drown Sign Unveiling

The Turn Around Don't Drown™ sign on Farm to Market Road in the Town of Ulster. Pictured from right to left are: Raymond G. O'Keefe, Meteorologist in Charge, Albany, NY National Weather Service; James E. Quigley III, Town Supervisor, Town of Ulster; Frank C. Petramale, Superintendent of Highways, Town of Ulster; Britt E. Westergard, Senior Service Hydrologist, Albany, NY National Weather Service.