Nassau County is prepared to launch an all-out assault on the coming winter storm predicted to slash across Long Island beginning Friday.
County Executive Edward P. Mangano said authorities are monitoring the looming storm and are prepared to commit major manpower and equipment to tackle the storm's aftermath.
"We are well prepared and we have hardened our equipment," Mangano said at a press conference at the county's DPW facility in Hicksville Thursday. "We know this is our job to do this and to provide the essential services the community needs."
The National Weather Service is predicting that the season's first major snow storm will strike Long Island sometime Friday afternoon or evening and transform into blizzard conditions overnight into Saturday.
Accumulations could range from 6-12 inches of snow locally by Saturday morning. Much of the Northeast will be impacted, the NWS forecasts.
This storm poses it's own unique problems, Mangano said.
"We will have to deal with high wind and blizzard conditions and those factors bring additional dangers to the public and our crews," Mangano said. "If you can't see (the road) we can't."
Wind gusts associated with the storm could range from 20-30 miles per hour with howling gusts rising to 60 mph. Downed trees and tree limbs, as well as power outages, are possible.
Nassau County has mobilized 175 workers who will use 85 salters and plows during and after the storm on county roads. An additional 16 payloaders will be deployed.
The county facility has 18,000 tons of salt and 5,000 cubic yards of sand on hand to de-ice the roads, Mangano said. A combination of salt and sand serves to provide traction and melt the snow and ice.
Meanwhile, Oyster Bay town officials are also monitoring the storm and say they are prepared to do battle with snow-covered town roads.
Once the snow starts falling, what ever's needed, we'll be ready," said Brian Devine, a spokesman for the Town of Oyster Bay.
The Town has about 150 trucks available with plows and other vehicles available as needed, he said. It has about 2,500 tons of salt and sand mixture available.
The Town is also opening three warming centers at the request of Nassau County. They are:
- Marjorie Post Park Community Center
- Syosset Woodbury Community Park
- Bethpage Community Center
The warming centers will be open 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday 8 a.m. to 11 p.m.