NEW YORK (WABC) — A powerful windswept rain storm is poised to hit the Tri-State area later Sunday and into Monday, threatening to unleash flooding, disrupt travel and damage property as officials and utilities warn residents to prepare.
Flood watches are set to go into effect Sunday afternoon across the region for a storm that will have widespread impacts up and down the East Coast. Queens, Brooklyn and Long Island will be under a high-wind watch during the storm. Eyewitness News has issued an AccuWeather Alert ahead of the storm for Sunday into early Monday.
Dani Beckstrom says Saturday is the clear better half of the weekend, as strong storms arrive Sunday.
The NYC Emergency Management Department issued a travel advisory for Sunday into Monday, alerting New Yorkers to prepare for strong to damaging winds and heavy rain that may cause flooding in the city, including highways, streets, basements, and underpasses.
Mayor Eric Adams urged New Yorkers to take the threat posed by the storm seriously.
“At this point, we aren’t expecting major impacts, but minor flooding is possible. To be safe, agencies across the city are hard at work, preparing for any potential impacts,” Adams said.
His concerns were echoed by New York Gov. Kathy Hochul, who underscored the snow threat the storm was presenting for parts of the Empire State, well north of New York City.
“I urge all New Yorkers to prepare now and plan for the next couple of days as the forecast comes into clearer view,” the governor said.
Already, MTA Bridges and Tunnels has decided to implement a “soft ban” on empty tractor-trailers and tandem trucks starting at 6 p.m. Sunday through 6 a.m. Monday. During the same time span, pedestrian walkways will be closed at the Cross Bay Bridge and Marine Parkway Bridge.
Meanwhile, PSE&G said the winds could reach “hazard levels” and urged residents to secure outdoor holiday decorations as part of their preparations.
“Strong winds can turn outdoor holiday decorations into projectiles, endangering people, property and even your power,” the utility said.
The first half of the weekend starts pleasantly enough, but don’t let your guard down. Temperatures surging well above average for early December, as many as 15 degrees above normal on Sunday, with highs around 60.
However, the storm will already be brewing. The developing system will gain strength and pull moisture from the Gulf of Mexico later Saturday then from the Atlantic Ocean by Sunday.
The strengthening storm and trailing cold front will generate rain and strong winds starting with showers Sunday morning, with stronger waves arriving during the afternoon.
The brunt of the storm, which could include thunderstorms, will happen Sunday night continuing into early Monday.
The rain is expected to be heavy and gusty winds could cause damage, especially over parts of Long Island.
AccuWeather says rainfall totals could range from 1.5 to 3 inches across the area. Parts of Long Island could even see over 4 inches if the storm slows and keeps intensifying.
Powerful gusts ranging from 40-50 mph could occur along the I-95 corridor. A narrow zone with wind gusts between 60 mph or more is possible in coastal areas and Long Island, especially as the cold front itself pushes through around midnight.
Street, urban and coastal flooding is possible, along with power outages and wind damage to property.
Colder air will follow the storm over the eastern half of the country on Monday. In fact, early Monday could see a 30-degree temperature range across the region, with readings in the 30s in the Catskills and 60s on Long Island. Those northly spots could see a quick shot of snow before the storm clears out.
Temperatures will return to near or slightly below the historical average for early December across the Tri-State.
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