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Power outages, downed trees in Malverne, West Hempstead amid Isaias

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Thirty county crews were out throughout the night and into the morning on Aug. 5 removing fallen trees and storm debris from county roads, which, County Executive Laura Curran said, were mostly passable.

PSEG was reporting 420,000 power outages as of press time on Monday, affecting several residents in Malverne and West Hempstead. Malverne Mayor Keith Corbett said during the village’s board meeting on Aug. 5 that 85 percent of the village lost power. Of that, roughly 15 percent of residents were still without power. Village officials expected homes in the Westwood area of the village to get their power back that night.

“We were fortunate to have crews of PSEG in Malverne before the storm started,” Corbett said. “It really allowed our [Department of Public Works] to get in and clear those trees.”

About 403,000 customers had been restored. PSEG serves about 1.1 million customers across Long Island and the Rockaways. Curran criticized PSEG for what she described as a lack of communication by the utility during the storm, saying people were unable to get through to report downed wires.

The village’s building department, Corbett said, coordinated with both the Malverne Police Department and the Malverne Fire Department to removes trees and limbs on residents’ homes. Corbett also said that the fire department had responded to more than 40 calls in a two-hour span.

“2020 has thrown a lot at us,” Corbett said, “but this village can take a lot more than what it’s had and we’ll obviously get through it with the character and integrity of our residents.”

Corbett added that no residents were injured during the storm.

A message on the PSEG website states that people can report outages in the following ways:

“Text OUT to PSEGLI (773454), report it online, through our app, or call 800-490-0075.”

The county was opening its cooling centers for those without power. County parks were also open, but not golf courses, pools or the rifle range.

For those making use of county parks, Curran said, “please be careful,” noting there are still many downed trees.

She also said county officials were coordinating with town and village authorities on local debris cleanup. A number of street lights remain without power, and she said motorists must exercise caution when entering “dark” intersections, adding that the county is working with PSEG to restore electricity to those intersections.

Isaias rolled across Nassau throughout the afternoon on Aug. 4 with relatively little rain but with sustained winds in the 30 to 50 mph range, with some gusts in excess of 70 mph, downing trees throughout the region, with some falling on homes.

Power outages were reported in western Nassau, in communities like Valley Stream, Franklin Square, Lynbrook and Rockville Centre, along with eastern Nassau in places like Levittown and Wantagh-Seaford. PSEG reported the following last week:

“Tropical Storm Isaias was one of the strongest to reach the service area in years, causing widespread, severe damage. Some outages could last for an extended period. Strong winds and hazardous gusts downed trees, branches and wires, currently affecting more than 368,000 of our 1.1 million customers across Long Island and the Rockaways. We have already restored power to more than 36,000 customers.”

The villages of Freeport and Rockville Centre have their own power companies, and widespread outages were reported in Rockville Centre on Aug. 4.

The storm shut down the Long Island Rail Road throughout the afternoon. A message on the LIRR site stated, “LIRR service is suspended systemwide due to high winds and hazardous conditions caused by Tropical Storm Isaias, including fallen trees, downed utility poles and power outages. We will resume service as soon as conditions safely allow.”

Long Island was lashed by the storm’s outer rain and wind bands, reducing the precipitation total.

The storm also hit during low tide, reducing flooding in low-lying areas.