All Nassau County flood and storm surge zones are under a mandatory evacuation beginning 2 p.m. Sunday and the county has opened several shelters in anticipation of Hurricane Sandy.
“It is essential that you relocate during the nice weather,” Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano said during a Sunday afternoon press conference at Nassau County Office of Emergency Management’s headquarters in Bethpage. “As soon as the winds begin to hit the 50 mph range, debris becomes deadly. It is a threat to not only you and your family but also to our first responders.”
Residents south of Sunrise Highway from the Queens line to Rockville Centre and those south of Merrick Road from Rockville Centre to the Nassau-Suffolk border are under mandatory evacuation. On the North Shore, anyone that resides in an area that is 15 feet above sea-level or less will also be forced to evacuate. Long Beach has already been ordered to evacuate.
Officials suggest that those in the evacuation zones stay with family and friends who live outside the storm surge zones. They also opened four shelters at 1 p.m. These shelters are:
- Nassau Community College – P Building (1 Education Drive, Garden City East)
- Levittown Memorial High School (150 Abbey Lane, Levittown)
- Locust Valley High School (99 Horse Hollow Road, Locust Valley)
- SUNY Old Westbury (223 Store Hill Road, Old Westbury)
A pet shelter will open at the Nassau County Mitchel Athletic Complex’s Administration Building in Uniondale at 3 p.m. Sunday. At 4 p.m. a Special Needs Shelter will open at Nassau Community College’s CCB Building. Additional shelters will open as needed. An Orthodox Shelter will open at 7 p.m. at West Hempstead High School.
Storm surge from Hurricane Sandy is expected to hit a record high of 6 to 11 feet on the North Shore and 5 to 10 feet on the South Shore. Both Nassau and Suffolk counties are currently under a state of emergency.
Mangano urged residents to begin evacuating as soon as possible. Both NICE Bus and the MTA will shut down public transportation starting at 7 p.m. Sunday night.
“Do it now. The roads are clear, the stores are open, the traffic’s moving,” he said. “Now is the time to get comfortable in your friends or your family’s home outside of the surge zone.”
Residents reporting non-life threat emergencies should call the Non-Emergency Hotline at 1-888-684-4274 in lieu of 911.