Gov. Andrew Cuomo has declared a state of emergency for Long Island, New York City and portions of upstate New York ahead of Hurricane Henri’s arrival tomorrow.
Henri, which was upgraded to a Category 1 hurricane this morning, is currently expected to make landfall at or near hurricane force on eastern Long Island tomorrow morning.
The storm is expected to bring significant storm surge, with the potential of between two to four feet of surge inundating areas near the shore. Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone issued a voluntary evacuation order for Fire Island in Brookhaven ahead of the storm’s arrival.
Cuomo urged residents in low-lying areas to “get out now.”
“If you know you are in an area that tends to flood, get out of that area now, please, and get to a place of safety,” he said.
The potential for flooding rain is also high, with isolated rainfall totals of up to 10 inches of rainfall possible, according to the National Hurricane Center. The risk from both flooding rains and storm surge could lead to water rescues.
Cuomo has activated 500 National Guards troops with high-water vehicles to assist with water rescues if necessary, along with 1,000 state police personnel. FEMA is also pre-deploying to Long Island ahead of the storm, he said.
Henri also has the potential to bring hurricane-force winds to Suffolk County and the East End, all of which is currently under a hurricane warning.
If the storm tracks east, the potential for hurricane-force winds could be limited to the East End. The National Hurricane Center currently estimates the East End’s chances of sustained tropical storm force winds at 90% or higher, with the rest of Suffolk County and portions of Nassau County estimated between 80 and 90%.
The LIRR will suspend service east of Ronkonkoma and Patchogue after midnight tonight, Cuomo said.
He also urged residents to prepare for the possibility of power outages. PSEG Long Island warned yesterday that it could take crews up to 7-10 days to restore power from storm outages.
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