Governor Kathy Hochul today urged New Yorkers across upstate New York to prepare for severe thunderstorms and high winds beginning late Sunday afternoon and continuing through Monday. In addition to the ongoing heat advisory, the National Weather Service has predicted that areas of Western New York, Finger Lakes, Southern and Central New York are at increased risk of being affected. by these storms. Forecasts in these areas call for heavy precipitation, damaging winds, hail and the possibility of isolated tornadoes. Locally heavy downpours can also produce minor flooding in low-lying areas, as well as those with poor drainage.
In response, Governor Hochul directed state agencies to prepare emergency response resources and personnel to ensure localities have the necessary support in the event of a major impact. New Yorkers are encouraged to closely follow their local forecast, check on their neighbors and stay safe for the duration of the storms
“While a heat advisory remains in effect until late this afternoon with heat readings up to 97 degrees, severe thunderstorms are expected to cross the state later today and tonight, bringing a much-needed relief to New Yorkers who have been battling high heat for the past few days,” Governor Hochul said. “I have instructed state agencies to prepare emergency response capabilities should our county partners require assistance. In the meantime, I ask New Yorkers to watch these severe storms and prepare immediately in the event of a power outage.”
Thunderstorms will move west to east throughout the afternoon and evening before a cold front brings relief from the sweltering heat and humidity. On Monday, New York City, Long Island and the Hudson Valley will face a slight risk of severe weather. Showers will lessen from west to east on Monday, and warmer, drier weather is expected on Tuesday and Wednesday.
For a complete list of weather watches, warnings, advisories, and the latest forecasts, visit the National Weather Service website.
New York City’s Homeland Security and Emergency Services Commissioner Jackie Bray said, “Storms expected across much of the upstate have the potential to cause real damage and New Yorkers should do everything they can to prepare and stay safe. The state emergency operations center is closely monitoring these events. storms and our teams are ready to support our local partners however we can.”
Homeland Security and Emergency Services Division
The New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Emergency Operations Center monitors weather and travel conditions and will coordinate response needs with local governments. State stockpiles are ready to deploy assets to localities to meet all storm-related needs, including pumps, chainsaws, sandbags, generators, beds, blankets and water in a bottle.
The Department of Transportation monitors weather conditions and is ready to respond with over 3,200 supervisors and operators. Personnel can be configured into any type of response teams needed (flood response, chipper, load and carry, sewer jet, cut and launch, traffic lights, etc.). The statewide equipment numbers are as follows:
• 1,297 large dump trucks
• 304 large magazines
• 81 tracked and wheeled excavators
• 72 shredders
• 19 students
• 15 vacuum trucks with sewer jets
• 14 bucket trucks for the tree crew
The Thruway Authority has 640 operators and supervisors ready to respond to any wind or flood related issues statewide with small to medium sized excavators, plows/dump trucks, large loaders, portable VMS arrays , portable light towers, generators, pumps and equipment. towing trailers, as well as traffic signs and other traffic control devices available for any detours or closures. Variable message signs and social media are used to alert motorists to highway weather conditions.
During this heat wave, Thruway staff monitored road conditions and performed wellness checks on disabled vehicles.
The statewide equipment numbers are as follows:
- 346 large and small dump trucks
- 65 large chargers
- 7 vacuum trucks
- 16 crawler and wheeled excavators
- 8 brush chippers
- 99 Chainsaws
- 19 bucket trucks
- 84 portable generators
- 67 portable lighting units
The Thruway Authority encourages motorists to download its mobile app which is available for free download on iPhone and Android devices. The app gives motorists direct access to live traffic cameras, real-time traffic information and navigation assistance while on the move. Motorists can also sign up for TRANSalert emails that provide the latest traffic conditions along the Thruway, follow @ThruwayTraffic on Twitter, and visit thruway.ny.gov to view an interactive map showing traffic conditions for the Thruway and other New York State roads. .
Department of Environmental Conservation
DEC Environmental Protection Police officers, rangers, emergency management personnel, and regional personnel are on alert and monitoring the developing situation and actively patrolling areas and infrastructure that may be at risk. be affected by extreme weather conditions. All available assets, including swiftwater rescue teams, are positioned to assist in any emergency response.
Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation
New York State Police and Park staff are on high alert and closely monitoring weather conditions and their impacts. Park visitors should check parks.ny.gov or call their local park office for the latest updates on park hours, openings, and closings.
New York Electricity Authority / Canal Corporation
The New York Power Authority and New York State Canal Corporation are monitoring conditions and preparing all assets for inclement weather. NYPA and Canals representatives will stay in close contact with state, county and local emergency personnel as needed. NYPA stands ready to dispatch NYPA Transmission and other personnel to assist if needed. The Canal Corporation will notify the public as needed through its Notices to Mariners alerts. Members of the public can sign up to receive such notices on the Canal Corporation website.
Civil Service Department
New York Utilities has approximately 6,400 workers available, as needed, to engage in damage assessment, response, repair and restoration efforts throughout New York State, in the event of potential severe weather events. Agency staff will monitor the work of the utilities throughout the event and ensure that the utilities transfer the appropriate personnel to the areas experiencing the greatest impact.
New York State Police
State police are ready to deploy additional troops, as needed, to affected areas. All State Police specialty vehicles, including four-wheel drive vehicles and utility vehicles, are staged and ready for immediate response. All troop backup power and communications equipment has been tested.
Severe Weather Safety Tips
• Know the county you live in and the names of nearby towns. Severe weather warnings are issued by county.
• Learn the safest route from your home or business to high, safe ground if you need to leave quickly.
• Develop and practice a “family escape” plan and identify a place to meet if family members become separated.
• Make a detailed list of all valuables, including furniture, clothing and other personal property. Keep the list in a safe place.
• Stock emergency supplies of canned food, medicine, first aid supplies and drinking water. Store drinking water in clean, closed containers.
• Plan what to do with your pets.
• Have a portable radio, flashlights, extra batteries and emergency cooking supplies available.
• Keep your vehicle fueled or charged. If the power supply is cut off, gas stations may not be able to pump fuel for several days. Have a small first aid kit in the trunk of your car.
Have disaster supplies on hand, including:
• Flashlight and extra batteries
• Battery operated radio and extra batteries
• First aid kit and manual
• Emergency food and water
• Non-electric can opener
• Essential drugs
• Checkbook, cash, credit cards, ATM cards
• Never attempt to drive on a flooded road. Turn around and take another path.
• If the water begins to rise rapidly around you in your car, abandon the vehicle immediately.
• Don’t underestimate the power of fast moving water. Two feet of fast-moving floodwater will cause your car to float, and water moving at two miles an hour can sweep cars off a road or bridge.
• Follow the 30-30 rule: If the time between seeing lightning and thunder is 30 seconds or less, the lightning is close enough to strike you. Seek shelter immediately. After the last flash, wait 30 minutes before leaving your shelter.
• Lightning strikes the highest object. If you are above a tree line, quickly drop below and crouch if you are in an exposed area.
• If you can’t get to shelter, stay away from trees. If there is no shelter, crouch in the open, twice as far from a tree as it is tall.
For more safety tips, visit the New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Safety Tips webpage at www.dhses.ny.gov/safety.