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LI could still get rain from weakened Hermine, forecasters say

A worker from the Southold Town highway department

A worker from the Southold Town highway department removes fallen branches on Mill Lane in Mattituck on Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2016. Credit: Randee Daddona

Hermine slowly weakened Tuesday as it lingered more than 100 miles off Long Island’s coast, bringing gusty winds strong enough to knock out power and causing beach erosion and minor coastal flooding, forecasters said.

Early Tuesday afternoon, the National Hurricane Center said Hermine had weakened enough to cancel the tropical storm warning for Suffolk County.

Gusty winds diminished as the day progressed, forecasters said. This after wind gusts — mostly in the range of 25 to 40 mph — from Monday evening into Tuesday morning toppled some trees and caused thousands of power outages.

The National Weather Service said a dangerous rip current risk continues for the Island’s ocean beaches until 7 p.m. Wednesday.

Hermine “will continue to weaken as it sits just south of Long Island,” said News 12 meteorologist Bill Korbel. “There will be lingering clouds and maybe a few showers on Wednesday with warmer weather and more sunshine starting Thursday.”

PSEG Long Island said Hermine led to about 15,000 individual customer outages since 5 p.m. Monday, all of them fielded by local crews after the utility sent home hundreds of off-Island workers called in advance of the storm.

At 8:15 p.m. Tuesday, 160 customers were without power, 104 of those in Nassau.

The highest wind gusts hit the East End, according to the National Weather Service.

Among the highest recorded gusts were 53 mph about two miles west of Hither Hills State Park in Montauk; 50 mph about four miles northeast of Calverton; 47 mph in Westhampton Beach; and 43 mph in East Hampton, weather service meteorologist Joe Pollina said.

“It did get quite windy, especially out on the Twin Forks,” Pollina said Tuesday afternoon. “I’ve seen reports of some trees down.”

Hermine caused beach erosion at Robert Moses State Park and Hither Hills, officials said Tuesday.

Monday night’s high tide carved out 3- to 4-foot drop-offs at parking field 3 at Robert Moses. And 4 to 5 feet of dune was eroded on the main beach at Hither Hills, said George Gorman, deputy regional director of New York State Parks on Long Island.

Swimming continues to be prohibited at Jones Beach, Robert Moses and Hither Hills, where lifeguards are still on duty “keeping everyone out of the water,” Gorman said.

Though swimming isn’t allowed, the three parks are open and beachgoers will still be charged for parking, according to Gorman.

With Mark Harrington, Rachel Uda and William Murphy

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