BAY SHORE - County Executive Steve Levy (R-Suffolk) called for a voluntary evacuation of western Fire Island today as Hurricane Irene barrels toward the East Coast.

Islip Town Supervisor Phil Nolan says at this time, the evacuation applies only to visitors and non-residents. Officials say a mandatory evacuation may be issued for residents tomorrow. Meanwhile, everyone is advised to prepare for severe flooding, high winds and power outages.

Many Fire Island residents say they are already heeding the warning and have begun preparing their homes for the storm. Those living in other areas of Long Island are following suit, stocking up on supplies and tying down outdoor furniture.

Currently, officials say shelters at Brentwood High School and Longwood High School in Brookhaven will be open this weekend, with the possibility of more shelters opening later on.

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