Winter Storm Jonas
(Print this now should you lose power later!)
A Blizzard watch has been issued for Long Island from Saturday morning through Sunday afternoon.
This means residents can expect heavy snow, about 8 to 12 inches of it, along with strong and potentially damaging winds, according to the National Weather Service.
When a Blizzard watch is issued, forecasters are about 50 percent positive a blizzard will occur.
During a blizzard:
Some non-main roads may become impassable.
Strong winds may down power lines and trees.
Low visibility (a quarter-mile or less at times) could make traveling extremely dangerous.
The National Weather Service calls winter storms “Deceptive Killers” because most deaths aren’t directly caused by the weather. People mostly die in traffic accidents on icy roads and of hypothermia from being exposed to the cold for a long period of time.
It is important for residents to be ready for the extreme winter weather before it strikes.
Patch has compiled a list of how you can prepare for a blizzard, what to do once it hits and a list of emergency numbers to keep on hand. Information is provided by the Red Cross, Nassau County and Suffolk County.
How to Prepare for a Blizzard:
Winterize your vehicle and keep the gas tank full.
Keep a disaster supply kit in your vehicle.
Make sure your cell phones, tablets and laptops are charged; have a backup cell phone charger.
Keep these items in your home: batteries, flashlights, bottled water, a non-electric can opener, a week’s supply of medicine, ready-to-eat foods, wood for the fireplace, propane for barbeque grills, emergency medical supplies, a fire extinguisher and extra cash.
Have plenty of warm clothing and blankets.
Make sure your home is properly insulated by installing storm windows or covering windows with plastic from the inside to keep the cold air out.
Remove parked cars from the road to make it easier for snowplowing.
If you are going away during cold weather, leave the heat on in your home and set it to a temperature of no lower than 55 degrees.
What to Do During a Blizzard:
Use safe sources of alternative heat: a fireplace, a small well-vented wood or coal stove, or portable space heaters.
Stay off the roads if you can. If you must drive, travel during the day, don’t go alone, tell others where you’re going, stay on main roads and avoid back roads.
Watch for signs of frostbite or hypothermia.
Don’t overexert yourself while shoveling snow. Heart attacks are a major cause of death during the winter. Cold temperatures put an extra strain on your heart.
Walk carefully on snowy and icy walkways
Stay away from downed power lines as they may be electrified.
Do not walk or drive into flooded areas.
Do not place trash bags, barrels or recycling bins on top of snow banks. Place them on the street at the foot of the snow banks or at the end of the driveways. Make sure these items are not in the path of the plows.
Keep children away from the snow banks and from the edge of the road.
Stay off the roads when the plowing operations are taking place. The plows are able to operate more effectively with less traffic. Motorists on the road should give the plows plenty of room.
Residents should clear snow away from the nearest fire hydrant and keep catch basins clear of snow to prevent street flooding.
Keep sidewalks and pathways clear for pedestrians.
Do not deposit any water or other freezable substances onto the streets. The water may freeze and cause a hazardous condition.
Emergency Phone Numbers:
Call PSEG LI at 1-800-490-0075 to report an outage.
Call 911 or your local fire department to report a downed electric wire and stay away from the wires.
No Telephone Service: Call your local telephone provider from your cell phone or a friend/neighbor’s phone.
Smell of Gas: Call National Grid at 1-800-490-0045
No Cable Service: Optimum: 631-393-0636; Verizon Fios: 1-800-837-4966
Train and Bus Schedules: Call the MTA at 511 or 1-877-690-5116
Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano
January 21, 2016
Nassau County is no stranger to heavy snow fall, but with the impending snowstorm scheduled to impact our area, here are some very important safety tips and contact numbers where you can receive storm-related information and assistance. It may be helpful to keep a list of numbers with you during the course of the storm.
As a reminder of the importance of being prepared here is a winter safety checklist which includes precautions and helpful tips. Please review the safety information below in addition to the important contact numbers.
ALL LIFE THREATENING EMERGENCIES SHOULD DIAL 911
• Nassau County Office of Emergency Management: (516) 573-9600
To Report Power Outages or Downed Power Lines:
• PSEG Hotline: 1-800-490-0075
24-Hour Gas Emergency Service:
• National Grid: (800) 490-0045
State Maintained Roads:
• NYS Department of Transportation: (631) 904-3059
• Nassau County Department of Social Services: (516) 227-8519. After office hours (516) 573-8626.
• Emergency Shelter Program WARMBED: 1-866-927-6233. (1-866- WARMBED)
• Nassau County Red Cross: (516) 747-3500
• Long Island Crisis Center: (516) 679-1111
• The Safe Center L.I.: (516) 542-0404
Mass Transit Information:
• MTA/LIRR/LI Bus online: http://www.mta.info
• LIRR 24 hour travel information center: (718) 217-5477
• NYC Transit travel information: (718) 330-1234
• NICE Bus Travel Information Center: (516) 228-4000
• Make sure your car is prepared for cold temperature and wintery conditions like snow and ice. Keep your equipment properly maintained and include a winter survival kit in your vehicle: an ice scraper, snow shovel and sand/salt, battery jumper cables, flash light, cell phone and charger, extra clothes/warm winter apparel.
• Be sure to clear snow and ice off your car- including windows, mirrors, lights, hood, roof and trunk.
• Be cautious of black ice and slippery roads. Remember that speed limits are meant for dry roads not roads covered in snow and ice so be sure to adjust speed based on road conditions.
• Avoid passing snow plows and sand trucks, as the drivers can have limited visibility.
• Monitor road and weather conditions by checking local news stations and weather sites.
• Avoid traveling during a major snow storm or blizzard unless absolutely necessary. If you must travel, inform someone of your travel plans.
Safe Snow Shoveling Clean Up:
• When snow is predicted move cars off the street and into the driveway (if possible) to enable the plow drivers to do the best job of clearing the roadways.
• If you have a fire hydrant in front of your home, make sure to remove snow from that area. In the event of an emergency the fire departments may need access to fire hydrants.
• Be careful to avoid over exertion, lifting a heavy shovel full of snow or even walking through heavy, wet snow or snow drifts, could strain your heart.
• Be careful of back and body injuries, the most common injuries associated with snow removal include sprains and strains, particularly in the back and shoulders, as well as lacerations and finger amputations. DO NOT remove snow from snow blower using your hands/fingers.
• Make sure to wear, layered, clothing which provides both ventilation and insulation,
• Try to clear snow early and often, to avoid dealing with packed, heavy snow or even ice.
• If you experience chest pains, shortness of breath, or other signs of a heart attack, stop right away and call 911.