Hurricane Sandy Information for New York City

Serious reinforced sandbags from last year's hurricane
Serious reinforced sandbags from last year's hurricane via A Great Big City on Flickr

With Hurricane Sandy predicted to impact the New York City area early next week, now is the time to start preparing.

Although last year’s Hurricane Irene didn’t end up causing much damage across the city, Hurricane Sandy is showing increased potential of coastal flooding which could seriously disrupt NYC. Hurricane Irene swept up along the east coast back in August and hit the city directly, which actually decreased the most serious effects. Hurricane Sandy is instead projected to travel over the Atlantic, then head toward land just south of New York City. The path of the storm, combined with its counter-clockwise rotation, has the potential to push large amounts of water toward the city, where high waves and coastal flooding may cause damage and evacuations.

[Update] Mayor Bloomberg has issued a mandatory evacuation of Zone A, the most low-lying areas of the city. Use the map below to find if you live in this zone.

NYC Hurricane Evacuation Zones via John Keefe/WNYC

WNYC has provided two important tools to prepare for the storm: a Hurricane Sandy storm tracker and a map of NYC’s Hurricane Evacuation Zones, where you can find which evacuation zone you live in based on your address. This is essential information, as the city may impose mandatory evacuations of low-lying areas along the water if coastal flooding looks imminent. During Hurricane Irene, Zone A was evacuated, so be sure to locate your neighborhood evacuation shelter ahead of time, using the NYC Hurricane Evacuation Shelter locator.

While this storm does have the potential to make quite an impact on the city, it’s also important to remain level-headed this weekend. The blistering pace at which information is updated may seem overwhelming and evacuation procedures may sound scary, but remaining calm and getting prepared are two of the most important ways to deal with the storm. Take time this weekend to stock up on some recommended supplies, remembering to get some extra cash, food, adequate supplies of prescription medicine, check the batteries in your flashlights and radios, and write down important information such as phone numbers and shelter locations, since your computer and cell phone may be unusable without electricity or internet service.

Info to follow as Hurricane Sandy approaches:

If you have any storm resources to add to the list, questions about weathering the storm in NYC, or photos of storm prep, leave a note in the comments or mention @agreatbigcity on Twitter!

AGBC will be live on Twitter all through the storm, providing updates, photos, and emergency info.

Important information from Notify NYC

The latest Notify NYC statement contains good, concise info on what to expect over the next 24 hours:

Notification issued 10/27/2012 at 9:15 PM. There is no evacuation order for New York City at this time; however, if you live in a low-lying area and have concerns about flooding or prolonged power loss, consider staying with friends or family outside the affected area. If you cannot stay with family or friends, shelters will be available in public schools around the city and will open at 9 AM tomorrow, 10/28. To find out what zone you live in and the location of your nearest shelter visit the OEM Evacuation Zone Finder at If you cannot reach a shelter by yourself, call 311 for help with transportation. All evacuation centers have at least one wheelchair accessible entrance. Additionally, all NYC parks are closing at 5 PM tomorrow, 10/28. Learn more about preparing for coastal storms with the attached OEM Ready New York: Hurricanes and New York City Guide.

- Notify NYC

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