GREENBURGH, N.Y. — Usually quiet on a Friday afternoon, Sam's Club in Elmsford had lines of people winding through its aisles in preparation of Hurricane Sandy.
"It's been like that all day," Sam's Club employee Vanessa Arias said. "This is a Saturday crowd — usually Friday isn't that busy. It's getting hectic."
Hurricane Sandy has picked up the nickname "Frankenstorm," because it is forecast to make landfall on the Atlantic coast right before Halloween. The worst of the storm is expected Monday through Tuesday, with a potential for 60- to 80-mph winds and a half-foot of rain in Westchester County areas, according to AccuWeather.com.
The result could be worse than last year's Hurricane Irene, which caused power outages in the thousands, fallen trees and flooding in prone areas. Shoppers such as Greenburgh resident Sheila Whitney rushed to stock up on canned goods and bottled water, preparing for the worst.
"I've spent $3,500 pruning my trees," Whitney said of her preparations for the hurricane season. When Irene hit last year, branches fell all over her yard and power lines. "I hope we're not going to get hit again."
Town Supervisor Paul Feiner sent an email earlier this week asking residents and businesses to respond if they would like their drains inspected to prepare for flooding. He authorized overtime so the department can continue its work into Saturday and has contacted residents living in flood-prone areas, such as Babbitt Court in Elmsford, to start preparing for the storm.
Feiner also forwarded concerns about low-hanging branches and dead trees to Con Edison, which has trimmed or removed them to minimize damage and power outage risks.
"We're being proactive and checking drains now," Feiner said. "But people have to realize, with a hurricane coming, there could be flooding no matter how prepared we are."
The Theodore D. Young Community Center plans to open its doors once again to community members seeking shelter from the storm or looking for a warm place to stay if power is lost, said center Commissioner William Carter.
Con Edison is monitoring Hurricane Sandy and is preparing field crews to respond to storm damage and electric problems. Visit Con Edison's website for more information on the storm and what to do if you lose power.
Keep checking back with The Greenburgh Daily Voice for more updates on the storm's track.