As a powerful nor'easter blankets the Town of Islip, Supervisor Phil Nolan is asking local residents to stay home and keep cars off local streets to allow snow removal crews to clear the 12-inches to 18-inches of snow that is expected to fall by Monday morning.
Nolan said there will be about 300 snow removal crews working Sunday and Monday across the town, which is responsible for clearing about 1,100 miles of roadway.
"Once the snow really gets going with blizzard conditions, it will be tough out there," he told Patch. "But the bottom line is we can't wait until the snow stops to clear it because at that point it is too heavy to move."
An early advantage the town has on its roadways is a brining program, where a salt and water mixture has been put down on roadways. While the water evaporates, the salt remains and as the snow begins to fall, the remaining salt is activated and melts any frozen precipitation that begins to accumulate. However, Nolan noted that the brine works with small amounts of snow, and as accumulations build, plowing and additional salting and sanding will be needed.
"The brining gives a head start," he added. "But the brine can't melt a foot of snow."
Nolan also suggested that town residents with emergencies during the storm should call Islip's Emergency Operations Center at 224-5600.
At Long Island Islip MacArthur Airport in Ronkonkoma, spokeswoman Catherine Green said that Southwest Airlines and US Airways canceled all flights after 3 p.m. The airport is planning to resume normal operations Monday at approximately 12 p.m. It is suggested that travelers with flights scheduled to or from MacArthur Airport call their carriers.