As Hurricane Sandy continued to barrel north, Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone held a press conference Sunday afternoon to update residents on the county's preparations for the huge storm.
Bellone said Suffolk County has been coordinating with federal, state and local emergency responders; the Suffolk County Emergency Operations Center will be open 24/7 until further notice.
County courts are also closed Monday.
As previously, announced, a mandatory evacuation of Fire Island commenced at 2 p.m. on Sunday; a state of emergency was declared Saturday in Suffolk County.
The Long Island Power Authority, Bellone said, was slated to de-energize Fire Island Sunday afternoon to prevent fires.
In addition to three emergency shelters previously announced in Hampton Bays, Sachem, and Brentwood that opened Sunday morning, an additional shelter, located at Eastport-South Manor Junior/Senior High School, 543 Moriches-Middle Island Road, in Manorville, was opened on Sunday.
Additional shelters will open as needed in coordination with the American Red Cross, Bellone said.
In addition, two pet friendly shelters are open at the Brentwood Rec Center and Suffolk County Community College's Eastern Campus, Woodlands Building, in Riverside.
Bellone announced other updates:
- The MTA has suspended Long Island Rail Road service as of 7 p.m. on Sunday.
- Suffolk County Transit will shut down at 6 p.m. on Sunday.
- All Suffolk County parks will be closed at 6 p.m. on Sunday.
- Suffolk County health centers and mental health clinics are closed until further notice.
- For residents without transportation, Suffolk County buses will provide evacuation transportation to shelters through 8 p.m. on Sunday. Residents should go a regular bus stop to access evacuation transportation.
- Bellone also reminded that local municipal officials have called for mandatory and voluntary evacuations: Surge zones can be found at www.suffolkcountyny.gov.
- Mandatory evacuations are in place for surge zone 1 areas in Babylon, Islip, Brookhaven, Riverhead, Southampton, and Southold.
- Voluntary evacuation for surge zone 1 areas is suggested in Huntington, East Hampton, Shelter Island, Smithtown, and Brookhaven (surge zone 2).
- Any Suffolk County residents in surge zone areas, mandatory and voluntary, will receive Code Red notification from the Suffolk County Office of Emergency Management.
- The last flight out of MacArthur Airport will take off at 5:45 p.m. Sunday.
- Suffolk County residents who are disabled and need evacuation assistance should call 631-852-4900.
- Bellone asked that residents use 911 only for life-threatening emergencies, not for information.
- Residents with non-emergency situations can use the SCPD non-emergency number, 631-852-2677, or the Suffolk County Fire Rescue and Emergency Services line at 631-852-4900.