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Wet Christmas Eve, windy Christmas day in long-range forecast for Long Island

It looks like anyone dreaming of a windy Christmas is likely to get his or her wish.

Forecasters are monitoring conditions for a strong storm that could deliver gusty winds and heavy rain Wednesday, snarling traffic of various sorts on the day before the holiday.

That's with precipitation expected to be over by Christmas morning, but continuing winds with possible gusts of up to 35 mph, said Joe Pollina, weather service meteorologist based in Upton. Highs on Tuesday and Wednesday could be in the low 50s, and in the 40- to 45-degree range on Christmas day.

White Christmas lovers staying on Long Island are pretty much out of luck this year, as on Wednesday "the track of this low is not favorable for snow in our area," the weather service said on its Facebook page. "In addition, there is no arctic high pressure to provide the really cold air we would need for snow. Therefore, this will be mainly a RAIN event."

Probability for rain starts increasing Monday, with a quarter to half an inch possible Monday afternoon into Tuesday, according to the weather service. The highest chance, though, is for Wednesday, a major travel day, when rainfall could average 1 to 2 inches, with minor street flooding possible, the weather service said.

Still several days out, precise timing and rainfall amounts are subject to change, Pollina said.

The weather service said "winds will probably be the bigger concern," with a wind advisory possibly needed.

As for the weekend, last-minute shoppers on Saturday will find "seasonably cool" temperatures in the upper 30s to around 40, Pollina said, with a slight chance of sprinkles or flurries, no accumulation expected, late Saturday night and Sunday, when highs are expected in the lower 40s.

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