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Severe thunderstorms sweep through LI, cause power outages

Cars drive down Glen Cove Road in Westbury

Cars drive down Glen Cove Road in Westbury as rain continues Tuesday evening, June 23, 2015. Credit: Danielle Finkelstein

A round of severe storms swept through Long Island Tuesday evening, bringing hail, rain and strong winds that led to power outages, officials said.

"We have outages affecting about 4,600 customers right now," said PSEG spokeswoman Kristina Pappas at about 8 p.m., adding that the outages are weather-related. "We have extra crews on hand until everything is restored."

After hitting a high of almost 5,000 outages, the number went steadily down through the evening as repair crews restored power, according to the PESG-Long Island website.

The severe thunderstorms were caused by a cold front that tracked through the region, the National Weather Service said, bumping up against the warm, humid air of recent days. The day's high temperature was 84 degrees, recorded at about noon in Islip, while the low temperature was 71 degrees, which occurred at about 3 a.m. Tuesday, said Upton-based National Weather Service meteorologist Peter Wichrowski.

A severe thunderstorm watch had been in effect until 9 p.m. Tuesday and the severe thunderstorm warning expired at 6:45 p.m. Tuesday for Long Island. But the weather service said there was still a chance of a storm through 11 p.m. for parts of the Island.

Earlier in the day, an initial round of storms skirted around Long Island, prompting News 12 Long Island meteorologist Rich Hoffmann to tweet: "This severe thunderstorm missed long island has winds near 60mph and penny size hail. Glad it missed"

But a second round moved across the Island at about 6 p.m.

Some of those storms were severe, but the rain was not quite as heavy as forecast.

All told, Wichrowski said, rainfall totaled .11 inches.

Because of the severe weather, the Port Authority urged travelers to check with their airlines about possible flight delays as well as to allow extra time to reach their destinations.

Once the storms move out late Tuesday, Wednesday is expected to be sunny and less humid, with high temperatures in the mid-80s, the weather service said.


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