After declaring the county in a state of emergency earlier Friday afternoon, Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano is moving forward with mandatory evacuations along the north and south shores.
"After discussions with the National Weather Service, it appears that Nassau County will experience a direct impact from Hurricane Irene on Sunday, with heavy wind and rain arriving tomorrow," Mangano said at a press conference. "It is essential that this evacuation begin prior to wind gusts that exceed 55 miles per hour. Once winds exceed this level, flying debris could be deadly. It is also essential that this evacuation begin immediately, as the MTA will shut down public transportation by noon on Saturday."
The mandatory evacuation order is 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. on Saturday.
Residents should utilize coastal evacuation routes, which include: Peninsula Boulevard, Long Beach Road, Meadowbrook Parkway and the Seaford-Oyster Bay Expressway.
More than two dozen shelters are opening across the county at 7 p.m. Click here for important numbers and links.