Tag Archive | "blizzard"

UPDATE: Town Declares State of Emergency; Nine Inches of Snowfall on the East End

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A backyard pool in East Hampton Friday morning.

A backyard pool in East Hampton Friday morning. (Tessa Raebeck photo).

By Tessa Raebeck

UPDATE Friday 11 a.m. 

Nine inches of snow fell in Bridgehampton overnight, according to Joey Picca of the National Weather Service. Light snow is ongoing and over the next hour, locations on the East End could see another half inch of snow.

“For the most part,” said Picca, “intensity is winding down and we expect that trend to continue for the next hour or so.”

Winds coming from the north and northwest remain strong and gusty, and the already fallen powder will continue to be blown around throughout the day. The wind chill is expected to remain at anywhere from 0 to -5 degrees throughout the afternoon.

The Town of Southampton has issued a blizzard warning, effective until 1 p.m. Friday.

The South Shore of Suffolk County is under coastal flood advisory Friday from 7 p.m. to midnight. The northwest region of Suffolk County has been issued a coastal flood warning, from 9 p.m. Friday until 2 a.m. Saturday.

All town offices in Southampton and East Hampton are closed Friday due to inclement weather. Many businesses in Sag Harbor and throughout the towns remain closed.

East Hampton Town is still urging residents to stay off the roads and has prohibited parking along public roadways. Any parked vehicles may be towed. Emergencies should be reported via 911 and storm-related non-emergency calls may be directed to 907-9743 or 907-9796.

A man walks down Main Street in Sag Harbor Thursday afternoon.

A man walks down Main Street in Sag Harbor Thursday afternoon. (Tessa Raebeck photo).


UPDATE Thursday 6 p.m.

East Hampton Town Supervisor Larry Cantwell has declared a State of Emergency, effective 4 p.m. Thursday.

The town is urging residents to refrain from driving during the storm and has prohibited all parking along public roadways. Parked vehicles may be towed.

The LIE (Long Island Expressway) and other major roads will also be closing at midnight due to hazardous conditions, Governor Cuomo announced Thursday.

Southampton Town has declared a limited state of snow emergency, effective at 3 p.m. Thursday. All town facilities and government offices will be closed starting at 6 p.m. and remain closed on Friday, January 3.

The Sag Harbor School District has closed all buildings and cancelled all sports and other activities for Friday, January 3 due to the weather.

All East Hampton Town Senior Citizen programs at the Fireplace Road Facility and the Montauk Playhouse scheduled for Friday have been cancelled.

For non-emergency police calls related to the storm in East Hampton Town, contact 907-9743 or 907-9796.


Original Story

A blizzard warning has been issued for Suffolk County starting at 6 p.m. this evening and ending at 1 p.m. Friday. The East End can expect to see up to 10 inches of snowfall, according to Tim Morrin of the National Weather Service’s Upton, New York forecast office.

Most of the snowfall will occur tonight after 7 p.m., Morrin said. A steady, heavy snowfall is expected to start this evening and continue overnight and into tomorrow morning, with a total of eight to 10 inches of snow accumulating.

By Friday at noon, the snow “should be nothing more than a flurry,” Morrin said.

Following the blizzard, the National Weather Service expects the weather Friday to be extremely windy and “dangerously cold,” with the wind chill temperature dropping below zero.

Sustained winds of 25 to 35 mph with gusts of up to 45 mph are forecast.

On the roads, East End residents can expect “rapidly deteriorating conditions tonight and into tomorrow morning,” according to Morrin.

Road conditions will remain hazardous tomorrow afternoon, as the windy conditions will likely blow additional snow into the road and add density to the already fallen snow.

Although Governor Andrew Cuomo has yet to shut down the Long Island Expressway or any other major highways, his New York City Press Office said the governor is projecting road closures.

“Blowing, drifting snow can make travel difficult and dangerous,” Governor Cuomo said in a press release issued Wednesday, “so I encourage citizens to exercise caution if they have to leave their homes.”

“We recommend,” he added, “that everyone in potentially affected areas utilize mass transit and take steps to safeguard against frigid temperatures. Keep a close eye on the weather, follow any instructions issued by local emergency officials, and check on your neighbors and family members.”

The Suffolk County Department of Public Works has been salting all county roads since early this morning and will continue to monitor and respond to conditions.

The Emergency Operations Centers for both New York State and Suffolk County are open.

All storm-related non-emergency police calls in Suffolk County can be directed to 852-2677.

The New York State Department of Transportation provides a travel advisory system with frequently updated reports. To access it, dial 511 by phone or visit 511ny.org.

Blizzard Means Fun for Some Work for Others

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It was one for the record books. The 24 inches the blizzard of ‘09 dropped on the East End is the most in December since Richard Hendrickson has been keeping records  — and that’s over 80 years. Hendrickson, who is the United States Weather Observer for our region, measured exactly two feet “on the level” at his house on Lumber Lane in Bridgehampton.

The snow has conspired to shut down government as well as local schools.

The Sag Harbor School District announced on its website Sunday that classes will be cancelled tomorrow, Monday, and the Sag Harbor Board of Education meeting scheduled for Monday night has also been cancelled. Families with children in the district received a recorded message from school superintendent Dr. John Gratto on Sunday evening.

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Also on Sunday, Southampton Town Supervisor announced town offices and its justice court will be closed on Monday “due to substantial accumulations of snow and hazardous roadway conditions.”

The announcement from the town added that the town waste management stations would also be closed, but that all town offices and services would reopen on Tuesday, December 22.

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Supervisor Kabot made the decision to close town government facilities while emergency snowplowing operations will continue through Monday. Both east and west of the Shinnecock Canal have been impacted, with drifts higher than five feet in areas where farmfields and open spaces dominate the landscape.  

The supervisor’s order also empowers the town’s highway department to clear private roadways, although the release from the town said private and trustee roads would likely not be addressed until Monday.

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Under the executive order issued by Supervisor Kabot, police and public safety officials are authorized to restrict travel as determined to be necessary to ensure highway crews can clear roadways as quickly and efficiently as possible.  The Southampton Town Police Department was further authorized to take all necessary steps to remove parked vehicles on town roadways which have been determined to present hazards to the public or interference with emergency operations by the highway crews and public safety officials.  Wreckers have been deployed by the Police Department to remove obstructions from vehicles stuck in travel lanes where necessary.

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While school and town government will be closed Monday, Sag Harbor Village offices will be open, said Mayor Brian Gilbride on Sunday. Gilbride issued a snow emergency also, and a handful of vehicles left on Main Street, in the way of snow plows, received tickets on Sunday.

Down the center of Main Street Sunday stood mountains of snow about 15 feet high, where the village’s highway department had cleared the roadway to make it passable.

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“I want to congratulate Jim Early and the highway department for the great job they are doing,” said Gilbride Sunday evening. “They’ve been out since last night and working all day. They’re taking a break now,” said Gilbride around dinner time, “ but they’ll be back out again tonight.”

Gilbride said the snow was coming at such a fast pace Saturday night into Sunday morning that the highway crew was having difficulty keeping up with it.

“At times it was hard to keep just one lane open,” he said.

“This is definitely one of the biggest storms I can remember,” said Gilbride, who grew up in Sag Harbor.

The mayor said the highway crew will be removing the snow from Main Street on Monday. In addition, he said, the village business district will be prepared for Monday.

“We’re trying to get it ready for the merchants,” he said, adding that the village’s public parking lots are, for the most part, cleared.

“There is some snow,” he conceded, “but there’s just no place to put it.”

Gilbride, who works for Norsic Sanitation, said he had to travel to Southampton on Sunday for work and noted that in some places there was evidence the snow hit much harder.

“I bet there was a band that came through Southampton that had to drop three feet,” he said, noting there were spots where he was walking that were well over his knees.

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By midnight Saturday, both East Hampton and Southampton towns had declared snow emergencies, urging drivers to stay off the roads unless absolutely necessary as the blizzard with 15-20 mph sustained winds and gusts to 40, blew across the South Fork and the rest of Long Island. The warnings stayed in effect through Sunday morning as most major arteries were passable, yet still covered with snow. Most side roads were cleared by mid afternoon as local highway departments worked overtime trying to keep up with snow that dropped at two to three inches an hour during the height of the storm. Police say they have responded to numerous reports of vehicles veering off the road and Sunday morning has found several vehicles stranded.

Locally, reports of accumulations of 24 inches appear not uncommon, especially where the snow drifted. In Sag Harbor village, drifts topped that. Roads into the village, like Madison Street were plowed buy late morning, but what little traffic there was, was moving slowly.

Nary a headlight could be seen on Long Beach Road on Saturday night at the height of the storm, but by Sunday morning, Noyac Road saw traffic moving slowly.

Our East Hampton correspondents report there was about 20-inches in local backyards, drifts over the hoods of cars, and the side street impassable.

Snow continued through 11 a.m., and as snow ended shortly after noon, the sun broke from the west.

“This has been a good one,” said weather obesrver Hendrickson on Sunday afternoon, who said he had been out in his hip boots, butthey were “hardly enough.”

Hendickson said the water content of the snow was fairly high, equal to about 2.53 inches of rainfall per inch of snow, responsible for the deep wet snow and all the work East Enders were going to have digging themselves out.

“I don’t know who’s going to plow out my driveway, but it’s not going to be Dick Hendrickson,” laughed the nonagenarian.

School’s Out for Blizzard: Pierson and Town Hall Closed on Monday

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The Sag Harbor School District announced Sunday evening that school on Monday, December 21, will be canceled due to hazardous road conditions from the snow storm. The Board of Education meeting, which was scheduled for Monday evening, is also canceled and the board will next meet in the new year on January 4, 2010.
Southampton Town supervisor Linda Kabot closed down the town’s waste management transfer stations on Sunday. The supervisor announced later in the evening that the town Justice Court and other government facilities will be closed on Monday.