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Flash Flood Watch in Effect at Noon Through…

8 p.m. Update: Long Island Under Tornado Watch

Tornado watch in effect as Hurricane Irene closes to 315 miles south of New York City.

As Hurricane Irene closes in on Long Island, the region has an additional fear: Tornado watch.

The National Weather Service issued a tornado watch for Nassau and Suffolk counties until 5 a.m. Sunday. That's on top of the hurricane warning and flood watch for the region.

The National Hurricane Center's 7 p.m. Saturday update lists Irene as a Category 1 storm with 80 mph winds. The storm's center is 35 miles southeast of Norfolk, Va. as it heads up the East Coast -- just 315 miles from New York City.  

RELATED: Follow Patch live blogs on the storm from the ,  and .

The NWS calls for Long Island to see outer bands of the storm later Saturday with torrential rain and strengthening winds coming overnight and into Sunday.

coastal flood hazard has also been issued by the NWS for communities along the Long Island Sound and Atlantic Coastline, calling it a moderate flood zone. Nassau and Suffolk are listed as moderate inland flood hazards.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo declared a state of emergency on Thursday. It produced a cascade of emergency measures, including:

  • The MTA  for buses, subways and trains at noon Saturday.
  • Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano announced a  for all residents living south of Sunrise Highway, from the Queens line to Rockville Centre and south of Merrick Road, from Rockville Centre to the Nassau-Suffolk border. All those residing in these areas must evacuate by 5 p.m. Saturday.
  • North Hempstead Supervisor Jon Kaiman said low-lying areas and storm surge zones , including parts of Manorhaven, Manhasset Isle, Port Washington North and residents that live along Shore Road along Manhasset Bay.
  • Brookhaven Town Supervisor Mark Lesko announced a  effective 8 a.m. Saturday for those who reside in the town's South Shore flood zones, from Center Moriches toPatchogue.
  •  of low-lying areas south ofMontauk Highway will begin at 8 a.m. Saturday. 
  •  began 3 p.m. Friday.
  • Asharoken Mayor Patricia Irving has urged residents to . 
  • East Hampton Town Supervisor Bill Wilkinson officially declared a on Saturday. 
  •  began mandatory evacuations of low-lying areas at 10 a.m. Saturday.
  •   will officially be in a state of emergency beginning at 7 p.m. on Saturday, according to Mayor David Nyce.

According to NOAA models, Long Island faces up to an 100 percent probability of seeing tropical storm-force winds up to 74 mph. The model also shows the Island has a 10 percent chance of facing hurricane force winds.  

AK August 27, 2011 at 11:43 PM
It's only interesting if you're a tinfoil hatted nut into conspiracy theories. Don't post this trash.
Therese Bertsch August 28, 2011 at 01:10 AM
Ok lots of info, how about what should we do and how will we know we must do something in response to tornado in the middle of a hurricane???
Mike August 28, 2011 at 01:58 AM
COME AT ME IRENEBRO
FYI August 29, 2011 at 02:50 AM
AK, before you label it trash, read the link and become educated.
FYI August 29, 2011 at 02:52 AM
The winds this afternoon were worse than the storm itself. Irene's significant tree damage appears to be form ground already saturated and unable to take additional water. Good that everyone heeded precautions and lucky that storm was a bust.

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