10/26/12 4:41pm
10/26/2012 4:41 PM

SUFFOLK TIMES FILE PHOTO | Supervisor Scott Russell

Southold Town Supervisor Scott Russell said Friday that a discussion on the 2013 town budget scheduled for Monday night has been rescheduled for Thursday, Nov. 1 at 7 p.m. at the Peconic Lane Community Center due to the impending storm.

Mr. Russell said Southold will decide tomorrow, Oct. 27, whether to open town emergency shelters during the storm. If so, an announcement will be posted on the town’s website and will be covered on this site

He said Suffolk County plans to open three shelters, in Hampton Bays, Brentwood and Sachem, and a shelter for people with special needs at the John J. Foley Skilled Nursing Facility in Yaphank.

“Everybody’s been activated to stay ready,” he said.

12/08/11 11:00am
12/08/2011 11:00 AM

SUFFOLK TIMES PHOTO | A cracked telephone pole in East Marion following the overnight wind storm that knocked out power across Long Island.

A string of powerful overnight storms has left hundreds in Southold Town without power Thursday morning, with the number of reported LIPA outages jumping from about 300 to almost 1,800 across Long Island as of 10 a.m. as LIPA works to restore services.

GIANNA VOLPE | Downed tree branch in front of a Cutchogue home on the south side of Main Road at about 8:30 a.m.

About 280 outages have been reported in Southold Town, according to the LIPA power outages map. There are 144 customers without power in Cutchogue and nearly 120 power outages have been reported in Greenport.

Meanwhile, National Weather Service has issued a wind advisory and is warning motorists to be careful of downed trees and power lines. Wind gusts reaching up to 55 mph were expected to taper off around sunrise, the advisory reads, though strong winds continued to whip through the morning commute.

“Strong winds can make driving difficult,” the advisory reads. “Especially for high-profile vehicles.”

WRIV 1390 AM, which usually features Times/Review editors Michael White and Grant Parpan at 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. each Thursday, was not broadcasting as of 8 a.m. due to storm-related technical difficulties.

10/30/11 10:57am
10/30/2011 10:57 AM

Remember Hurricane Irene over the summer? As storms go, the nor’easter was a simple blowhard.
While it did snow late Saturday and early Sunday on the East End, it didn’t stick or accumulate, and it didn’t come anywhere near the 3-5 inches that the National Weather Service had predicted.
Still, there were some power outages and downed trees reported in the area.
The Long Island Power Authority reported Sunday morning 36 homes without power in Riverhead Town, and 154 homes in Southold Town.
In Riverhead, the bulk of the homes without power were in Wading River, where 32 homes were reported without power.
In Southold Town, there were 89 homes without power in Southold hamlet, 36 in Cutchogue, 26 in Orient Point, and less than five in Laurel.Southold Police reported a quiet night with a few downed limbs on local roadways but no major problems.
“We had about five or six trees come down,” said Riverhead Highway Superintendent George Woodson. There were two trees down in Wading River, one in Aquebogue, one in Riverhead and one on Sound Avenue.
“I didn’t get any calls about flooding so we must be doing good on our drain cleaning campaign,” he said.
Still, he said he was ready for snow.
“We had six trucks all set up and ready to go with the plows on,” he said.
The East End fared much better than other areas with Saturday’s storm.
The Weather Channel reported 2.6 million people without power in the northeast states, and more than an inch of snow was reported in Central Park in New York City.

08/27/11 4:33pm
08/27/2011 4:33 PM

TIM KELLY PHOTO | With Hurricane Irene on the way, Legends Restaurant owner Dennis Harkoff wasted little time in boarding up the still-open eatery Saturday morning. He received a helping hand from Tom Thompson of Cutchogue.

Few cars are on the road, shoppers have gotten what they need and gas station lines has thinned out as Southold braces for the wet and windy arrival of Hurricane Irene later today.

The town is preparing for the 7 p.m. opening of its emergency shelters in local schools, and while officials urge residents in low-lying areas to seek shelter elsewhere, there are no plans to impose a mandatory evacuation as some West End communities have done, said Police Chief Martin Flatley.

“We’re not planning to order anybody out,” he said. “We hope that by seven people will be in place, perhaps at a friend’s house or at a shelter.”

The worst of the storm is expected to hit near midnight, the chief said, and continue through to early afternoon Sunday. The current forecast puts Irene at a minimal Category 1 hurricane with sustained winds about 75 mph with gusts from 85 to 100. The latest projected track shows it coming ashore near the Nassau/Queens line or into Queens, said the chief.

“I has shifted to the west,” he said. “We’re on the wind-affected side and the city is on the flood-effected side.  I don’t know if that’s better or worse.”

01/13/11 10:00am
01/13/2011 10:00 AM

TIM KELLY PHOTO | A crew clears away the three that came down in the storm on the Main Road in Mattituck early Wednesday morning, closing the road and snagging power lines, which caused localized power outages. The road was passable by mid morning.

The storm that raced up the coast and dumped more than a foot of snow across Southold from Tuesday night into Wednesday caused power outages for over 260 households, more than any other town on Long Island, but apparently did not add to the Sound shore damage left in the wake of the December blizzard.

A downed tree near North Fork Deli in Mattituck briefly closed westbound Route 25 Wednesday morning, Southold police said.

Schools, libraries and municipal offices were all closed Wednesday. Local roads were passable, but it was slow going.

“The timing was great for the public, but not for my overtime budget,” said Supervisor Scott Russell. Because most of the snow fell overnight, many decided against driving to work Wednesday morning. But with the cleanup beginning in the wee hours, which means paying overtime, the town is facing higher snow removal costs, the supervisor said.

Still, he deemed this storm not nearly as bad as the one in December that severely damaged several homes along Hashamomuck Cove on the Sound in Southold and tore apart the nearby Town Beach parking field. At 15 to 20 mph, the winds were far less destructive than the December storm.

A large tree toppled over on Main Road in Mattituck early Wednesday, blocking the road and taking down power lines. By mid-morning the road was passable. A fallen tree similarly blocked part of Soundview Avenue in Southold

“Our biggest concern is with the wet snow and the way it’s sitting on branches and wires,” said Police Captain Martin Flatley. “There’s a lot of stuff sagging and that could add to the power outages.”

Southold Police Chief Ty Cochran said he’s concerned that once the snow stops people might head back out on the icy roads. Despite the town’s plowing and sanding, roads will remain hazardous, he said.

Greenport Mayor David Nyce said the village highway crew launched its cleanup efforts about 3 a.m. Wednesday and by late morning Wednesday those roads were clear. With sewer meter-reading crews at work clearing crosswalks, the village highway department then focused on digging out public parking areas, the mayor said.

“We got about 18 inches here in Greenport and my house is outside the village and the road wasn’t cleared until late,” said Mr. Nyce. “And then it took until after 1:30 to get the driveway dug out. A pretty sight, but not a pretty sight, if you know what I mean.”

Suffolk County Executive Steve Levy declared a snow emergency at 5 a.m. Wednesday, giving the county the ability to close roads if necessary for the sake of public safety. The county also closed its health centers and suspended bus service. The Long Island Rail Road suspended service on the Greenport line east of Ronkonkoma.

Shelley Scoggin, who operates The Market in Greenport, said it was indeed slow going as she drove to work from her Cutchogue home. Once she arrived, “it was business as usual,” she said.

Bob Ghosio, general manager of the Southold-based Burt’s Reliable heating fuel company, said his office received about 200 calls for oil refills in the two days preceding the storm, though the phones were quiet Wednesday.

Many businesses across the town and in the village, particularly delis and restaurants, were open on Wednesday.

The precipitation switched from snow to sleet and rain and back to snow early Wednesday, which limited snow totals.

“I could hear rain and sleet beating on my window,” said Captain Flatley.

Many heard claps of thunder and saw flashes of lightning before temperatures dropped and the rain turned back to snow.
Gerard Orientale of Sound Side landscape construction if one of them.

“I was plowing in Greenport at about 3 a.m. when it flashed, like a light going on,” he said. “It startled me.”

Vera Chinese and Julie Lane contributed to this story