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TROPICAL STORM WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT * LOCATIONS AFFECTED - Huntington - Smithtown - Port Jefferson * WIND - LATEST LOCAL FORECAST: Equivalent Tropical Storm force wind - Peak Wind Forecast: 30-40 mph with gusts to 60 mph - Window for Tropical Storm force winds: Tuesday afternoon until Tuesday evening - THREAT TO LIFE AND PROPERTY THAT INCLUDES TYPICAL FORECAST UNCERTAINTY IN TRACK, SIZE AND INTENSITY: Potential for wind 39 to 57 mph - The wind threat has remained nearly steady from the previous assessment. - PLAN: Plan for hazardous wind of equivalent tropical storm force. - PREPARE: Efforts to protect property should now be underway. Prepare for limited wind damage. - ACT: Act now to complete preparations before the wind becomes hazardous. - POTENTIAL IMPACTS: Limited - Damage to porches, awnings, carports, sheds, and unanchored mobile homes. Unsecured lightweight objects blown about. - Many large tree limbs broken off. A few trees snapped or uprooted, but with greater numbers in places where trees are shallow rooted. Some fences and roadway signs blown over. - A few roads impassable from debris, particularly within urban or heavily wooded places. Hazardous driving conditions on bridges and other elevated roadways. - Scattered power and communications outages. * STORM SURGE - LATEST LOCAL FORECAST: Localized storm surge possible - Peak Storm Surge Inundation: The potential for up to 2 feet above ground somewhere within surge prone areas - Window of concern: Around high tide - THREAT TO LIFE AND PROPERTY THAT INCLUDES TYPICAL FORECAST UNCERTAINTY IN TRACK, SIZE AND INTENSITY: Potential for storm surge flooding greater than 1 foot above ground - The storm surge threat has remained nearly steady from the previous assessment. - PLAN: Plan for storm surge flooding greater than 1 foot above ground. - PREPARE: Efforts should now be underway to prepare for storm surge flooding, especially in low-lying vulnerable areas. - ACT: Take actions to protect life and property. Prepare to leave if evacuation orders are given for your area. - POTENTIAL IMPACTS: Limited - Localized inundation with storm surge flooding mainly along immediate shorelines and in low lying spots, or in areas farther inland near where higher surge waters move ashore. - Sections of near shore roads and parking lots become overspread with surge water. Driving conditions dangerous in places where surge water covers the road. - Moderate beach erosion. Heavy surf also breaching dunes, mainly in usually vulnerable locations. Strong and frequent rip currents. - Minor to locally moderate damage to marinas, docks, boardwalks, and piers. A few small craft broken away from moorings. * FLOODING RAIN - LATEST LOCAL FORECAST: - Peak Rainfall Amounts: Additional 1-3 inches, with locally higher amounts - THREAT TO LIFE AND PROPERTY THAT INCLUDES TYPICAL FORECAST UNCERTAINTY IN TRACK, SIZE AND INTENSITY: Potential for moderate flooding rain - The flooding rain threat has remained nearly steady from the previous assessment. - PLAN: Emergency plans should include the potential for moderate flooding from heavy rain. Evacuations and rescues are possible. - PREPARE: Consider protective actions if you are in an area vulnerable to flooding. - ACT: Heed any flood watches and warnings. Failure to take action may result in serious injury or loss of life. - POTENTIAL IMPACTS: Significant - Moderate rainfall flooding may prompt several evacuations and rescues. - Rivers and streams may quickly become swollen with swifter currents and may overspill their banks in a few places, especially in usually vulnerable spots. Small streams, creeks, canals, and ditches may overflow. - Flood waters can enter some structures or weaken foundations. Several places may experience expanded areas of rapid inundation at underpasses, low lying spots, and poor drainage areas. Some streets and parking lots take on moving water as storm drains and retention ponds overflow. Driving conditions become hazardous. Some road and bridge closures. * TORNADO - LATEST LOCAL FORECAST: - Situation is somewhat favorable for tornadoes - THREAT TO LIFE AND PROPERTY THAT INCLUDES TYPICAL FORECAST UNCERTAINTY IN TRACK, SIZE AND INTENSITY: Potential for a few tornadoes - The tornado threat has remained nearly steady from the previous assessment. - PLAN: Emergency plans should include the potential for a few tornadoes. - PREPARE: If your shelter is particularly vulnerable to tornadoes, prepare to relocate to safe shelter before hazardous weather arrives. - ACT: If a tornado warning is issued, be ready to shelter quickly. - POTENTIAL IMPACTS: Limited - The occurrence of isolated tornadoes can hinder the execution of emergency plans during tropical events. - A few places may experience tornado damage, along with power and communications disruptions. - Locations could realize roofs peeled off buildings, chimneys toppled, mobile homes pushed off foundations or overturned, large tree tops and branches snapped off, shallow rooted trees knocked over, moving vehicles blown off roads, and small boats pulled from moorings. * FOR MORE INFORMATION: - - -

Acting State Health Commissioner "Walks the Walk" With Long Islanders to Help Fight Obesity

Exercising at Belmont Lake State Park is Part of Public Health Week Statewide Tour.

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Albany, NY - April 10, 2015 - Acting New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker’s statewide tour to fight obesity stopped at Belmont Lake State Park today where Dr. Zucker joined with New York State Parks, Recreation and Historical Preservation Commissioner Rose Harvey, the Long Island Health Collaborative (LIHC) and local officials to highlight the importance of physical activity in the fight against obesity. The group enjoyed a one-mile walk around Belmont Lake to reinforce the importance of getting physical. As part of National Public Health Week, Dr. Zucker has been leading a statewide tour, visiting with organizations helping to fight obesity in our communities. Governor Cuomo launched the statewide educational campaign this week to provide information to New Yorkers about the second leading cause of death nationwide.
“New York State has so many wonderful parks that offer countless opportunities for physical activity, which is a key element of defeating obesity,” said Dr. Zucker. “Whether it’s taking a walk on your lunch break, or enjoying the outdoors on a weekend afternoon with your family, I encourage all New Yorkers to make an effort in 2015 to turn off your TV and computers, get outside, and stay active!”
“New York State parks here on Long Island and across the State are the perfect places to be active and healthy.  From a brisk walk along the beach or a lake, a trail hike, or participation in an organized recreational activity, our parks offer countless opportunities for New Yorkers of all ages to get outside and exercise, surrounded by the natural beauty our parks have to offer and the support of our staff and fellow visitors.  I encourage all New Yorkers to explore their parks this summer and keep visiting as part of an active, healthy lifestyle,” said New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation Commissioner Rose Harvey.
The reduction of obesity rates is a key focus of the Prevention Agenda 2013-17, the state’s health improvement plan. As the second leading cause of preventable death in the United States, obesity and overweight have reached epidemic proportions and may soon overtake tobacco as the leading cause of death thanks to the role it plays in the development of many chronic diseases and conditions like type-2 diabetes, asthma, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. In New York State, 25.4 percent of adults are obese and another 35.9 percent are overweight, affecting an estimated 8.7 million people. On Long Island, approximately 20.8 percent and 28.4 percent of adults are obese, in Nassau and Suffolk respectively.
Because the causes of obesity are complex and occur at social, economic, environmental and individual levels, there is no single solution. Successful prevention efforts require multiple strategies at the national, state and local levels that support healthy eating and active living. The Long Island Health Collaborative has been a leader on Long Island in this effort through its Long Island Walk Initiative which helps support sponsored walking events and makes resources about the importance of walking and how to organize walking events available. 
“Long Island’s hospitals are all about prevention and wellness,” said CEO and president of the Nassau-Suffolk Hospital Council Kevin Dahill. “What better way to promote that message than by taking a walk in one of our area’s most beautiful parks.  Our hospitals and two local health departments frequently work together to bring prevention and treatment programs to Long Islanders.”
“I encourage all to integrate daily physical activity into everyday life,” said Nassau County Health Commissioner Dr. Lawrence Eisenstein.  “Regular physical activity, even as simple as walking, reduces the risk of chronic diseases such as high blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes.”
“Obesity can lead to a number of diseases, both chronic and acute,” said Suffolk County Commissioner of Health Services James L. Tomarken, MD, MPH, MBA, MSW. “The good news is that we can prevent many diseases by becoming more active. In Suffolk County there are myriad parks and trails available to both residents and visitors who want to live a more active lifestyle.”
“Nassau County is home to beautiful parks, nature preserves and recreational facilities,” said Nassau County Legislator Rose Marie Walker.  “I encourage all residents to take advantage of the wide range of activities that promote health and fitness, from nature trails, bicycling, swimming and golf. Our parks are the perfect place to live a healthier lifestyle.”
“Physical Fitness is a vital element of overall health and wellbeing and I’m proud to have sponsored and passed legislation creating a “Park’s Rx” program in Suffolk County,” said Suffolk County Legislator Kara Hahn. “It’s incumbent upon health care providers and policymakers to do all they can to promote recreation that enhances the quality of life for communities across Long Island”.
Physical activity, including walking, can help improve blood pressure, weight, cholesterol and even mood. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends people reach a goal of just 150 minutes of activity per week each week which equals a little more than 20 minutes a day.  In today’s busy world, some people are unable to work an exercise schedule into their day, however there are numerous ways that individuals can be more active, including:
-Park the car in a central location and walk to all your nearby errands rather than driving to each individual store.
-Find a walking buddy at work. Meet during lunch and go for a brisk walk and be sure to keep extra shoes and socks in your filing cabinet!
-Host a Walking Meeting—walk and talk over problems with your colleagues for the first 20 minutes then hit the conference room to write down ideas and finish up.
-Make a Walk-and-Talk date with a friend or family member. Rather than grabbing a coffee, do a loop around the neighborhood instead.
-Walk while waiting. Walk around the field at your child’s sports practice or outside the restaurant as you wait for your table.
LIHC is a bi-county initiative that promotes improved health through physical activity and nutrition awareness.  Members include Suffolk County and Nassau County Departments of Health, Long Island’s 24 hospitals, community-based social and human service organizations, schools, colleges, local governments, health plans, and other partners.  LIHC is coordinated by the Nassau-Suffolk Hospital Council, the association that represents LI’s not-for-profit and public hospitals.
First declared in 1995, National Public Health Week is an initiative of the American Public Health Association. It brings communities from all corners of the country together during the first full week of April to recognize the importance of public health policies and highlight issues that are vital to the overall health of the nation. In addition to Dr. Zucker’s statewide tour, DOH is also providing health tips through social media under the hash tag #GetFitNYS.
For more information about National Public Health Week, visit
For more information on ways to stay fit and eat healthy visit:
For more information about LIHC and the Long Island Walks Initiative, visit: