Rashed Mian

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Rashed Mian has been covering local news for the Long Island Press since 2011. He graduated from Hofstra University in 2010 where he studied print journalism. Rashed, the staff's multimedia reporter, covers daily news for the web, shoots/edits feature videos and writes about civil liberties. He loves Afghan food and sports. Rashed is also a caffeine freak. Email: [email protected] Twitter: rashedmian

What’s Next for Long Island? Rain, Wind & Falling Temps

Long Island may have been spared the worst of the monstrous nor’easter whopping the East Coast but the wintry mix, strong wind gusts and impending plunging temperatures won’t make for a fun evening or, for that matter, a generally comfortable commute for those heading home.

As day transitions to night on Long Island, residents can expect rain and breezy conditions with gusts of more than 30 miles per hour. Meanwhile, the temperature will drop to a low of 21, with the wind chill between 10 and 20 degrees, forecasters said.

Officials throughout the day urged residents not to take the storm lightly, as the wintry mix that characterized most of the storm could transform into black ice. The message: Don’t be fooled by passable roads.

“The snow has actually turned into more of a sleet and rain and that is expected to continue throughout the day and into the evening,” Gov. Andrew Cuomo said during a stopover in Dix Hills.

“That does not mean that it is safe to go out,” he continued. “The roads are very, very nasty and the roads are very dangerous. We are still clearing the roads, many of them are filled with sleet and slush and it is very important for us to get the roads cleaned before the weather drops tonight and that slush freezes.”

The consensus among officials Tuesday was that tightly packed slush creates less-favorable conditions than even more than a foot of snow. The concern is that the mixture of sleet, ice, and freezing rain could convert into all ice as the temperature drops, thus forming sheets of black ice.

Their concerns notwithstanding, officials expressed relief that predictions of blizzard conditions did not manifest.

“I for one am very happy when we have the occasional storm that comes in a little less than predicted and that’s what we’ve had here,” said Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone. “We talked all day yesterday about the fact that we are on the edge of the storm here. Predictions up to 18, even two feet in some areas but this is what happens with the weather, it can shift, and we saw that happen here and the accumulations here were less than predicted just yesterday.”

Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano noted how the Island “dodged the blizzard bullet,” while urging residents not to be deceived by the unimpressive snowfall.

“We’re fighting sleet, dropping temperatures, black ice,” said Mangano, who in October pleaded not guilty to bribery charges. “And those are the major concerns. There’s been a number of accidents in Nassau County.”

With numbers coming in from the Long Island Rail Road Tuesday, it appeared as if commuters heeded warnings to stay home. Ridership was only at 15 percent of what it usually is during the week, officials said. Despite the sustained wintry mix falling over the region, the LIRR operated Tuesday mostly close to schedule.

Later in the day, however, the LIRR was experiencing some weather-related cancellations and limited delays on at least two branches.

The storm impacted a large swath of the East Coast, knocking out power to thousands and paralyzing airports.

PSEG Long Island said more than 3,000 people were without power in the late afternoon.

Almost all flights were cancelled out of LaGuardia Airport Tuesday, and John F. Kennedy Airport saw two-thirds of its flights cancelled, with that number climbing.

Long Island and New York City escaped the worst of the storm’s wrath as it made a westward shift in the early morning.

The storm comes within less than a week left of winter and off the third-warmest February on record.

Mangano joked earlier in the day about the wild winter: 60 degrees one day, he said, and a winter storm the next.

“You know, extreme weather is a new reality,” said Cuomo. “My father was governor for 12 years. I’ve been governor for about six years. I’ve had twice the number of federal disasters than my father had in one half the time.”

(Photo credit: NY Governor’s office)

LI ‘Dodged Blizzard Bullet,’ But Officials Still Urge Caution

Officials on Long Island expressed relief Tuesday that a powerful nor’easter shifted, sparing nearly 3 million people of blizzard conditions, but they remained cautious about the threat posed by a wintry mix and powerful wind gusts.

“We basically dodged a blizzard bullet, but it’s still hazardous conditions out there,” Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano said at a press conference Tuesday.

With high amounts of accumulation no longer posing a significant threat to the Island, officials warned of a false sense of security. The roads are treacherous due to a combination of ice, sleet, and freezing rain, and a possible conversion to snow later could make matters worse, officials said.

Mangano said police counted 30 car accidents, including an overturned vehicle, several fender benders, and spin outs. The county was also receiving reports of downed trees.

The storm has proved challenging because it was impacting northern and southern Nassau differently, said Mangano, who last year pleaded not guilty to bribery charges.

There’s always concern, he said, “until the storm stops.”

In Suffolk, county officials also welcomed the downgraded forecast but urged residents to remain off the roads so crews could continue to tackle the storm.

“This is different than the trend we’ve seen in most of the storms we’ve had this season, where the eastern end of Long Island…has gotten hit harder,” Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said. “So we’ve gotten a little bit of a break here. But I want to caution people who look out the window and see that the roads are passable, that there isn’t significant accumulation on the roads. Those roads are still slick and icy.”

Suffolk County Police Commissioner Tim Sini said 911 call volume was down, a product, he suggested, of people heeding warnings to remain indoors.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the storm was less disruptive for Long Island and New York City, noting, however, that the nor’easter’s westward track did not bode well for upstate communities.

“Mother Nature can be an unpredictable lady, and she was once again today,” Cuomo said during a press conference in Dix Hills.

He cautioned residents not to be deceived by the lack of snow.

“That does not mean it is safe to go out,” he said. “The roads are very, very nasty and the roads are very dangerous.”

The concern now is that the wintry mix could freeze, creating sheets of black ice on roadways, Mangano said.

“It is hazardous out there on the roadway,” he said. “Sometimes the snow is better than this wintry mix.”

(Photo credit: Kevin P. Coughlin/Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo)

Less Snow Likely for Long Island as Storm is Downgraded

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Blizzard warnings across Long Island were lifted Tuesday and snowfall amounts were lessened just as a major storm impacting much of the East Coast made its way to the region.

With the storm’s track altered, forecasters predicted LI would get between 4 to 8 inches of snow—a stark change from the evening’s forecast, which called for upwards of two feet of snow.

Instead of a deluge of the white stuff, Long Islanders can expect snow, sleet, and freezing rain throughout the day. The sleet could be heavy at times, forecasters said, adding that periods of blowing snow are still possible.

A coastal flood warning is in effect for the South Shore until 2 p.m. Forecasters with the National Weather Service warn of “moderate coastal flooding” at high tide and localized flooding of vulnerable waterfront and shoreline roads.

Despite the change in forecast, the wintry mix was enough to cause problems on the Long Island Rail Road, which was facing system-wide delays of up to 15 minutes Tuesday morning.

The MTA was encouraging riders on Tuesday to stay home and avoid traveling by rail. It appears many riders heeded those warnings, with the LIRR reporting minimal ridership Tuesday morning.

Speaking at a press conference Tuesday morning, Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said that despite the uncertainty with the storm, it’s clear that “there is less accumulation than the forecast had predicted.”

“This is different than the trend we’ve seen in most of the storms we’ve had this season, where the eastern end of Long Island…has gotten hit harder,” Bellone added. “So we’ve gotten a little bit of a break here. But I want to caution people who look out the window and see that the roads are passable, that there isn’t significant accumulation on the roads. Those roads are still slick and icy.”

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said it was important to monitor the temperatures as day transitions to night.

“It’s actually easier to move snow than it is to move ice, obviously,” he said at a Tuesday press conference.

Still, he welcomed the latest forecast for Long Island and New York City, saying there’s been less disruptions than expected. “We have no evidence of any coastal flooding along Long Island…no evidence of any power outages of any significance, even though we had high gusts of wind,” Cuomo said.

Areas upstate were not so lucky, Cuomo said, adding that the state will redeploy equipment from Long Island to the Southern Tier, which could get battered with more than two feet of snow.

While Long Island seems to have been spared the worst, many states across the East Coast were not as fortunate. The powerful nor’easter could impact as many as eight states and has already been blamed for thousands of flight cancellations and delays. Nearly all flights out of LaGuardia Airport were cancelled and John F. Kennedy Airport was also dealing with significant delays, officials said.

The massive storm reportedly placed an estimated 15 million people under a blizzard warning, according to reports.

The snowy mix could continue well into the evening, forecasters said. And wind gusts could clock in at more than 40 miles per hour.

Blizzard Could Dump 2 Feet of Snow on Long Island

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(Photo by Michael Damm/Long Island Press)

Old Man Winter apparently has no sense of time.

With a week until spring, Mother Nature has decided to threaten Long Island with the most powerful winter storm of the season—a major nor’easter that could dump upwards of two feet of snow on parts of the Island.

The latest update from the National Weather Service’s Upton office says LI could see anywhere from 12-24 inches of snow, a slight upgrade from an earlier forecast that called for 20 inches.

Earlier on Monday the weather service issued a blizzard warning for most of Long Island, excluding the East End, which will go into effect midnight Monday and last 24 hours. Eastern Suffolk County is under a winter storm warning but could still face more than a foot of snow.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo took the precautionary step of declaring a state of emergency across all of New York. Cuomo ordered that the MTA suspend express subway service after Monday evening’s rush hour commute in order to store trains underground. Warning of future disruptions, Cuomo urged Long Island Rail Road commuters to avoid using the system on Tuesday.

“With heavy snow and blizzard-like conditions expected from upstate to downstate, we are taking every precaution to keep New Yorkers safe,” Cuomo said.

If the storm stays on track, it should enter the region after midnight Monday and pick up steam Tuesday morning, forecasters said. The storm could be at its most dangerous from the morning into the afternoon, with forecasters predicting snowfall rates of 2 to 3 inches per hour.

The blizzard could make traveling dangerous due to whiteout conditions. Aside from rapidly falling snow, Long Islanders may have to contend with powerful wind gusts of up to 55 miles per hour, forecasters said. Local utilities were issuing warnings early Monday about the potential for power outages from the severe storm.

And that’s not all. The South Shore could be in for a beating. A coastal flood warning was issued from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. Tuesday for those communities, as moderate coastal flooding is expected around high tide.

The late winter storm is threatening millions of Americans along the East Coast. Hundreds of flights have already been cancelled.

“The airlines are currently in the process of adjusting their flight schedules in advance of tomorrow’s storm,” Long Island MacArthur Airport reported. “Travelers are advised to check with their air carrier for the most updated information on delays and/or cancellations.”

Officials on Long Island took to the cameras Monday to urge residents to stay off the roads, as the early predictions do not bode well for the Island. In preparation, officials have already instructed crews to treat roads before the white stuff begins accumulating and are mobilizing workers in advance of the storm. In past blizzards, the biggest obstacle to attacking snow-covered roadways is the blowing wind, which makes navigating sleek roads difficult for plow operators.

For the region, this severe winter weather, which could be the strongest storm of the season, comes after one of the warmest Februaries on record.

Blizzard Warning Issued For LI, Up to 20 Inches of Snow Possible

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A blizzard warning has been issued for Long Island ahead of a major nor’easter that could bury the region in up to 20 inches of snow, forecasters said.

The National Weather Service’s Upton office issued the blizzard warning for all of the Island except for the East End, beginning midnight Monday through midnight Tuesday. Eastern Suffolk remains under a winter storm warning.

Forecasters are calling for heavy snow with blizzard conditions and wind gusting as high as 55 miles per hour. Snow accumulation could range from 12-20 inches, with snow falling Tuesday morning at a rate of 2 to 4 inches per hour.

The storm is expected to begin overnight and last through the day Tuesday.

Such conditions will make traveling dangerous and could produce whiteout conditions, the weather service said.

Drivers have been urged not to travel unless in an emergency, in which case they should keep an emergency kit handy in their vehicles, the weather service said. Stranded drivers have been advised to remain with their vehicles, if such a situation occurs.

“Several roads may become impassable. Power outages are possible,” the agency said. “Damaging wind gusts possible across Long Island and coastal Connecticut.”

The late winter storm may also have a serious impact on Long Island’s coastal communities along the South Shore. The weather service issued a coastal flood warning that runs from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. Tuesday.

Moderate coastal flooding is expected during high tide, forecasters warned. Beach erosion is also possible.

“This is a major storm. This is a potentially dangerous storm,” Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said Monday morning, adding that the county is in contact with state officials to monitor the situation.

Suffolk County Police Commissioner Tim Sini urged residents to stay off the roads Tuesday if the storm lives up to its potential. Pet owners are advised to keep their pets indoors.

 

Travel Ban 2.0: For Muslims & Immigrants, Outrage Gives Way To Fear

travel ban

During dark times, Dr. Isma Chaudhry turns to poetry.

“We first endure, then pity, then embrace,” she says, recently reciting a poem from Alexander Pope.

While poetry provides Chaudhry with a moment of solace, an escape, it’s the final two words of that stanza that nowadays gives her special pause. In her case, she worries that if Muslim Americans embrace their current situation—one in which people from certain nations are barred from entering the United States and Islamophobia continues to take hold—then the long struggle to quash prejudice and misconceptions about her religion would be comprised, and tragically, in vain.

“My biggest thing is that I just hope that people just don’t get exhausted, that’s how hateful rhetoric wins,” she says.

She worries about the many Muslim immigrants who’ve come to the United States seeking a better life who may be dispirited by the current political climate.

Chaudhry’s apprehension is not misguided or imagined: Attendance has dropped at the Islamic Center of Long Island, where she serves as president, and donations are down, because worshippers have become leery about writing checks, she explains.

“We want people to come, we want people to feel secure,” Chaudhry says. “Every time there’s an executive order, attendance dips…people think they’ll be tracked, they’ll be targeted.”

“Fear,” she adds, “brings in paranoia.”

On Monday, President Donald Trump signed a new executive order banning for 90 days the issuance of visas to citizens of six Muslim-majority nations and for 120 days refugee resettlement in the United States. “Travel ban 2.0,” as its been called, is more limited than one issued in February, which was written so ambiguously that even people living in the United States legally were impacted. But that has done little to quell concerns of Muslim Americans and immigrant communities. The Trump administration issued the latest ban incarnation after an appeals court in San Francisco declined to reinstate the previous order, which had been halted by lower court in Washington State.

The new order, which goes into effect March 16, makes it explicit that people with legal documentation not be impacted, and that waivers, in some cases, may be applied. It also omits language from the original order granting religious minorities entry into the country.

The fear Chaudhry talks about has been long-simmering. During the presidential campaign, then-candidate Trump called for a complete ban of non-U.S. Muslims from entering the country and toyed with the idea of a registry. As president, he’s signed the aforementioned executive orders and is reportedly considering exclusively focusing a Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) program on Islamic terrorism. Such a move would be a break from the current program that also considers right-wing violence, which has claimed half as many lives as jihadist attacks in since 9/11, but evokes little outrage.

Under President Obama, the CVE program generated mixed reviews. Some Muslims applauded the administration for being inclusive, while several advocacy and rights groups expressed concern that CVE would sow distrust because community members were being deputized to report extremist behavior, if any existed at all.

Taken together, the various policies being put forth by the administration in the name of national security has put many people on edge. The new ban has not eased those tensions.

“This was expected, so nobody was in a fool’s paradise that there was not going to be a follow-up,” Chaudhry tells the Press. “The community, we’re all very disturbed, first off, at the intent of this order.”

Rather than have Congress pass legislation curtailing immigration, the White House has instead issued presidential actions, which the administration argues is well within the powers of Trump’s office.

The administration cites the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, which gives the president authority to suspend entry “of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate.” Included in the order is an argument on national security grounds, noting that the six listed nations “present heightened threats” and recalling two episodes in which people who emigrated to the United States were arrested on terror-related charges—including one episode, ironically, of two men from Iraq, a country no longer impacted by the restrictions.

When lawyers for the administration defended the first order before an appeals court in San Francisco last month, they argued that border protection measures instituted by the president are “unreviewable,” to which the court said “runs contrary” to democracy.

State attorneys general in Washington and Minnesota successfully challenged the first order, largely because they could prove standing.

The new order was written to withstand judicial scrutiny and limit those who can claim injury. Some states are undeterred: Hawaii became the first state in the country to challenge the new ban and New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said he’d join Washington State in a separate suit challenging the most recent order.

“President Trump’s latest executive order is a Muslim Ban by another name, imposing policies and protocols that once again violate the Equal Protection Clause and Establishment Clause of the United States Constitution,” Schneiderman said.

The signing of the first order almost immediately sparked outrage. Also, civil rights groups wasted little time taking the administration to court, scoring a quick victory at Brooklyn federal court, where a judge put a hold on deportations.

Alireza Hedayati, an attorney from Roslyn, used the resources of his firm’s office to assist immigrants who had been impacted. He has held a seminar in Little Neck with people inquiring about the legality of the order, the status of green card holders, and how far border agents could go when questioning travelers. Even after the first ban was frozen, people continued to call his office with questions, he said.

Hedayati, who sits on the board of the Long Island-based Iranian American Society of New York, questioned the logic behind the earlier ban, arguing that many Iranians build successful lives and work in white-collar industries.

“Everybody wants to be safe here,” he said after the first ban was issued. “How are you going to be less safe from people that are here working in a hospital?”

Long Island is home to the second-largest population of Iranians in the country, behind only Los Angeles. The community on LI includes Jewish Iranians, many of whom fled during the Iranian Revolution in 1978. America’s long and contentious relationship with the country, which is jockeying for power in the Middle East with rival Saudi Arabia, has complicated Americans’ views of Iran.

“I never viewed the Iranian perception as negative,” Shamila Dilmaghani of Jericho said after the first order was signed. “I have a lot of pride to be Iranian-American. I’m surrounded, literally, by doctors, lawyers, engineers…the circle I am surrounded by—and it is a tight-knit community—everyone’s successful. This is why this is so shocking.”

“They’re very loving and peaceful people, and they want to have a relationship with the West,” she said of Iranians. “And isolation is not the way.”

Of the countries listed, Iran has been singled out the most by the new administration, which is critical of the Obama-era Iran nuclear deal. After Iran conducted a missile test, Michael Flynn, Trump’s short-lived national security adviser, publicly said Iran was “on notice.”

Since 9/11, no one from the listed countries has committed a successful terror attack on U.S. soil, researchers have found. As of 2015, citizens of all six countries were prohibited to travel to the United States without a visa under a new law passed by Congress. The State Department has designated three of the countries—Iran, Syria and Sudan—as state sponsors of terrorism.

For those already in America, the ban is seen as provoking additional anti-immigrant sentiment.

Dr. Yousuf Syed, trustee of The Selden Mosque, believes the best way for the government to defeat radical ideology is by building trust with existing Muslim communities.

“To stop immigration is not a good thing,” Syed tells the Press. “A Muslim ban is divisive, immoral, and undermines our American values. It does not make us safer, in my opinion.”

Chaudhry says she already notices the consequences of the ban. Aside from a noticeable drop in mosque attendance, she’s also had a difficult time finding Muslims willing to speak at interfaith events. As a result, Chaudhry has had to fill that void.

“When you stop fighting for your own rights, or when you’re afraid to criticize the policies of the state, that is something which won’t take you to a good place,” she says.

Team Trump Ousts Top Federal Prosecutor Leading Mangano, Venditto Probes In Nationwide Shakeup

capers

Robert Capers, the U.S. Attorney for Eastern District of New York, whose office indicted Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano and previously prosecuted ex-Suffolk County Police Chief James Burke, was among 46 Obama-appointed federal prosecutors forced to resign Friday by the Trump administration.

In a short statement released late Friday afternoon, Capers said: “I was instructed to resign my position as United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, effective March 10, 2017. It has been my greatest honor to serve my country, New York City and the people of this district for almost 14 years, with the last 17 months serving as United States Attorney.”

The Eastern District of New York covers Brooklyn and Long Island.

Capers, a career prosecutor, took over the position in December 2015 following Loretta Lynch’s appointment as U.S. Attorney General, which is now held by former Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions.

Capers does not appear to have been singled out. According to Reuters, he was reportedly among 46 Obama-appointed U.S. attorneys forced out by the Trump administration on Friday. No reason was given for the unceremonious departures.

It was unclear Friday afternoon whether crusading federal prosecutor for the Southern District of New York, Preet Bharara, was included in the mass shakeup.

The Eastern District of New York has a history of prosecuting corruption and terrorism cases. Capers followed in the footsteps of his predecessor Lynch, who prosecuted al-Qaeda recruits from the region, including one who plotted to blow up the Long Island Rail Road.

In the past month, Capers’ office brought federal racketeering and murder charges against more than a dozen members of the MS-13 gang, some of whom were indicted for the slayings of three Brentwood teenagers. His office also announced the arrest of a Commack man who allegedly tried to join two terror groups, including ISIS.

Other high-profile cases include the indictment of Mangano and ex-Town of Oyster Bay Supervisor John Venditto on bribery charges, whose cases are pending. Mangano’s wife, Linda, was charged for a lucrative no-show job related to her husband’s alleged dealings.

In a separate corruption case, Capers’ team convinced a jury to convict former Suffolk County Conservative Party Chairman Ed Walsh for collecting a $200,000 salary for time spent other than at the Suffolk County jail, where he served as a correction lieutenant.

Under Capers, the Eastern District prosecuted James Burke, the retired Suffolk police chief who pleaded guilty to beating a burglary suspect and engineering a vast coverup. The suspect in that case, Christopher Loeb, was taken to Suffolk police’s Fourth Precinct, where he was chained and beaten by Burke. The police chief became involved after Loeb was arrested for breaking into Burke’s police-issued SUV and stealing a duffel bag containing Burke’s gun, ammo, porn and sex toys, prosecutors said.

Former President Barack Obama nominated Capers for the position in October 2015. The U.S. Senate appointed him two months later.

Bridget M. Rohde will take over Capers’ position until the president appoints a successor.

3-5 Inches of Snow Possible for Long Island

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As much as five inches of snow could hit Long Island Friday as a winter storm moves across the region, forecasters said.

On Friday, the National Weather Service’s Upton office said the entire region is under a winter weather advisory, including eastern Suffolk County, which had originally been placed under a winter storm warning.

Initially, the weather service said 7 inches of snow could possibly fall on the East End but a Friday morning update indicated less accumulation. The current forecast calls for 3-5 inches across the Island.

Despite the adjusted outlook, forecasters are still warning drivers of slippery roads and limited visibility of a half-mile at times.

The storm is expected to taper off to snow showers and flurries Friday afternoon. The evening is expected to be dry but temperatures are going to plunge to the mid-teens and wind chill values could be in the single digits.

The weekend forecast calls for clear skies but chilly weather. Saturday will be around 29 degrees during the day before falling into the teens at night. Same goes for Sunday.

Long Islanders who interpreted the recent warm-up as winter conceding to spring early should brace for even more winter weather. As it stands, there’s a chance of snow Monday night through Wednesday and temperatures will be near freezing.

Winter Storm Warning Issued, 7 Inches of Snow Possible on LI

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(Photo by Michael Damm/Long Island Press)

Forecasters Thursday afternoon issued a winter storm warning for parts of Long Island as snowfall totals for the region also increased.

The warning, which runs from 10 p.m. Thursday to 4 p.m. Friday, is for Suffolk County, which is now expected to get 4 to 7 inches of snow, according to the National Weather Service’s Upton office. Much of Nassau County, which is under a winter weather advisory until 2 p.m. Friday, could see up to 6 inches of snow.

The winter storm warning means “severe winter weather conditions are expected or occurring,” the weather service said on its website. “Significant amounts of snow are forecast that will make travel dangerous.”

The storm will begin Thursday night and continue through most of the day Friday—meaning a potentially messy morning commute.

Aside from possible heavy snowfall at times, roads could become hazardous and slippery. Temperatures will be around freezing and visibility could be less than a half-mile, forecasters said.

The weather service is urging people to refrain from travelling unless it’s an emergency. Drivers are recommended to keep any extra flashlight, food and water in their vehicles, the weather service said.

Aside from the snow, drivers will also have to contend with wind gusts of up to 25 miles per hour, which could contribute to reduced visibility.

The storm is expected to initially enter the region as rain before transitioning to snow overnight, forecasters said. The storm is likely to have an impact on Friday’s morning commute.

Temperatures on Friday should remain around freezing throughout the day before plunging into the teens in the evening. Gusts as high as 30 mph will make it feel more like zero to 10 degrees outside, forecasters said.

The storm should clear out by Friday night and give way to sunny skies this weekend.

And don’t look now but forecasters are eyeing yet another snow storm early next week.

Winter Storm Could Dump 5 Inches of Snow on Long Island

Long Island weather

It’s not spring yet. Long Island could get hit with up to five inches of snow as part of a winter storm that’s expected to develop late Thursday night and continue through the treacherous morning commute.

The National Weather Service’s Upton office on Thursday issued a winter weather advisory from 10 p.m. Thursday through 2 p.m. Friday. Forecasters said 3 to 5 inches of snow are possible before the storm ends. There’s currently an 80-percent chance of precipitation.

The weather service warns that travel could be hazardous and slippery due to accumulation. Temperatures will be around the freezing mark and visibility is expected to be reduced to a half-mile at times, forecasters said.

“A winter weather advisory means that periods of snow…sleet…or freezing rain will cause travel difficulties,” the weather service said. “Be prepared for slippery roads and limited visibility…and use caution while driving.”

The forecast calls for a mix of rain and snow before it turns to all snow early Friday morning.

While Long Island will be bathed in sunshine during the day Thursday, with temperatures in the 50s, the mercury should drop to near freezing at night. After the storm, Friday will be partly cloudy with a high of 38. The evening will be much cooler, with temperatures in the teens and wind chills in the single digits.

By Saturday the winter storm will be long gone but near freezing temperatures are expected to remain through the weekend.

Returning to Thursday’s sunny conditions on Long Island, the weather service issued a special warning about an “enhanced threat of fire” due to the combination of strong winds and low humidity “given near-record dry fuel levels for the time of year.”