Mineola and the rest of Long Island faced treacherous conditions when winter storm Grayson dropped up to almost a foot of snow on the area Thursday, Jan. 4. Bone chilling temperatures and high whipping winds that exceeded 50 miles per hour caused white out conditions, making travel extremely perilous and closed local schools for two days.
During the height of the blizzard, Mayor Scott Strauss declared a state of emergency for Mineola due to the unpredictable shifting weather pattern and high winds that were accompanied by the blizzard. The emergency declaration was issued pursuant to New York State law and enabled village departments to better respond to the blizzard’s impact, addressing any storm related situations that arose. The village had been closely monitoring the storm’s progress all last week and made the appropriate preparations in advance, which included coordination with village, town, county and state emergency planning agencies.
With outdoor conditions rapidly declining, Nassau County Executive Laura Curran urged residents to remain indoors and to not drive unless it was absolutely necessary.
“I urge all residents to stay home until our emergency vehicles and plows continue to keep our roads safe,” said Curran.
Whether driving was a necessity or not, motorists across Long Island were left stranded. Nassau County Police recruit Amanda Rebehn and Field Training Officer Craig Lamountain helped a stranded motorist on Jericho Turnpike near Maple Place in Mineola.
The blizzard also affected local businesses. Noah Siegel, owner of Siege Athletics in Mineola only had a few early morning clients come in to his gym before Siegel decided to close early for the day.
“By 10 a.m. it was clearly getting worse not better,” said Siegel. “The plows passed but it was pretty useless. A short time after (the plows passed), the snow was ankle deep in the street. The roads were almost impassible even with four wheel drive. It was dangerous because visibility was only 15 to 20 feet at best.”
Blizzard Brings Snow Days
Last Thursday’s blizzard sure made a lot of kids happy. The blizzard dumped almost a foot of snow on the area, ultimately closing school for two days, giving kids within the village a nice four day weekend to enjoy the snow.