Long Islanders Should Prepare for Significant Winter Storm, Officials Say

NWS graphic

A winter storm has the potential to bring six to 14 inches of snow to Long Island between Wednesday and Thursday, impacting the evening and morning rush hours, officials said today.

Both Nassau County Executive Laura Curran and Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone urged residents to work from home or drive home early before the storm is expected to arrive at about 2 p.m. Wednesday, according to the National Weather Service.

“If possible, please avoid traveling on the roads when the storm starts to kick up,” Curran said.

NWS issued a winter storm watch for Nassau and Suffolk counties from 2 p.m. Wednesday to 1 p.m. Thursday. NWS, which termed the storm “significant,” also predicted wind gusts as high as 50 mph that could bring down tree branches, disrupting utility lines, and causing power outages. Coastal flooding is also possible.

Suffolk’s Office of Emergency Management and Department of Public Works will be working around the clock to clear the roads and respond to any emergencies during “the first pandemic snowstorm,” Bellone said. 

Curran said county workers are treating the roads with salt and brine, of which they have a good supply after there was little snowfall last winter. Eighty-seven plow trucks will be plowing roads as the snow comes down overnight.

Nassau’s OEM will be open from tomorrow at 7 a.m. through the duration of the storm, and the county’s three warming centers will be open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday.

Residents can report power outages to PSEG Long Island at 1-800-490-0075.

The New York State Department of Transportation and Thruway Authority are also ready to respond with snowplows.

“PSEG Long Island is closely tracking the progress of this significant weather front, and we are hard at work making all necessary preparations to respond to the potential impact of the high winds and snow accumulations,” said John O’Connell, vice president of Transmission & Distribution at PSEG Long Island. “We are bringing in mutual aid crews to to work alongside our highly trained line personnel , and our workforce is performing system checks and logistics checks to ensure the availability of critical materials, fuel and other supplies.”

After the storm passes, the forecast calls for temperatures in the 30s and 40s through the weekend, dropping as low as the 20s overnight.

-With Tim Bolger

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