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Tracking Sandy: Sunday 2 p.m. Update

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has mobilized nearly 2,000 New York Army and Air National Guardsmen Sunday as Hurricane Sandy closes in on Long Island.

The National Hurricane Center said Sandy is a Category 1 hurricane with maximum sustained winds of 75 mph as of the Sunday 11 a.m. advisory. It’s moving to the northeast at 14 mph about 575 miles south of New York City.

The forecast cone includes most of Long Island, and its latest track has Sandy making landfall along the New Jersey coast early Tuesday. The National Weather Service in New York has issued a high wind warning for the region.

Watch: Radar

Cuomo declared a state of emergency Friday afternoon in anticipation of the storm impacting the region. Sunday he called up the Guard, mobilizing first on Long Island.

Troops will go to Farmingdale Armed Forces Reserve Center to act as a response force in Suffolk County. The Air National Guard's 106th Rescue Wing will have 50 airmen on duty at the Gabreski Air National Guard Base to handle missions on eastern Long Island and provide National Guard liaison officers to work with emergency management officials in Suffolk and Nassau counties. By Monday evening, a total of 250 soldiers will be assigned to the center in Farmingdale and 150 airmen assigned to Gabreski.  

Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone declared a state of emergency for Suffolk County and Islip Town Supervisor Tom Croci ordered a mandatory evacuation of Fire Island. Suffolk emergency shelters will open Sunday 8 a.m.

Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano declared a state of emergency Saturday and mandatory evacuation of storm surge zones, particularly the South Shore, Sunday at 2 p.m. He also announced the closing of all county parks, marinas and senior centers Sunday at 5 p.m. Visiting hours at the Nassau County Correctional Center are cancelled for Monday. 

"We are expecting record storm surges – with current models predicting surges greater than Tropical Storm Irene," Mangano said. "Experts predict between 4-8 feet of storm surge."

The National Hurricane Center calls for a storm surge, combined with extreme high tide, of 6-11 feet along the Long Island Sound. 

The Long Island Rail Road will suspend all service starting Sunday at 7 p.m.

NICE bus service in Nassau will be suspended at 7 p.m. Sunday. There will be no bus service Monday.

North Shore-LIJ Health System said its hospitals would discharge non-acute patients ahead of the storm.

LIPA warned of extended power outages, as much as 10 days. The state said LIPA and National Grid have 730 linemen and 187 tree trimmers ready to roll.

A tropical storm warning has been issued from Cape Fear to Duck, N.C. The storm had been downgraded from a hurricane to tropical storm overnight Friday, but regained strength as it hit the warm Gulf Stream. It's being blamed for at least 58 deaths in the Caribbean.

Sandy is expected to bring extreme weather to Long Island – depending on the track – beginning late Sunday. The latest forecast calls for the region to get between 1-4 inches of rain with western Long Island possibly seeing more.

Long Island has a 70-90 percent chance of getting tropical storm-force winds. Tropical storm-force winds have been measured 520 miles from the storm's eye. 

The NWS issued a hazardous weather outlook for the region and warns of high winds causing widespread downing of trees and power lines along with coastal flooding.

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Mels Ditties October 29, 2012 at 02:20 PM
Local TV news reporting 10,000 on Long Island (South Shore) already with power out...
Working Man October 29, 2012 at 02:21 PM
ALL schools should have been open today. Maybe close an hour early. Tomorrow maybe a different story. As usual teachers get a few more FREE days off. S C A M
Mels Ditties October 29, 2012 at 02:27 PM
Those of you who many have doctor's appts (and are actually going to venture out to go) CHECK FIRST!...We have several docs offices on our client list and 3 have already notified us that they will be closing at noon and most likely will be closed tomorrow....
Anne October 29, 2012 at 02:28 PM
South Huntington announced their closing around 6pm last night.

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