"Knowing about Earl now and Fiona coming right behind her, we're going to stay away for a while," Maria Rivas said.
In downtown Brooklyn, emergency officials including police and fire launched a new campaign to be prepared - perfect timing for a hurricane, even if it does dodge the city.
"At this point it appears Earl is going to pass to our right or east, stay out in the open water, but we're going to have some effects in New York City," Emergency Commissioner Joe Bruno said.
Those effects include high wind and perhaps a lot of rain Friday. That's why the city emergency situation room's been activated.
Federal officials say they're not worried about the hurricane hitting New York.
"Most of the models show New York City is not going to have hurricane-force winds, but hurricanes don't' follow scripts," Richard Serino, FEMA Deputy Administrator, said.
Still, the NYC Department of Buildings is advising all builders, contractors, developers and property owners to take precautions because of the potential impact of Hurricane Earl.
The Department will be performing random spot-check inspections of construction sites around the city.
If construction sites are not safely secured, officials could issue violations and Stop Work Orders if necessary.
The department says property owners must consider the safety of their buildings and construction sites, cranes, suspended and supported scaffolding, hoists and any other building appurtenances that may come loose under heavy winds and rain should Earl hit the city.
The forecast track is east of the city, but these actions are being taken out of an abundance of caution.
The department strongly suggests consulting a professional to advise how to safely secure construction sites and buildings.
The department also offered these tips:
To secure construction sites, builders, contractors and developers should take all precautionary measures including but not limited to the following:
Buildings Bulletin 2010-019 outlines the requirements for vertical netting, debris netting and material fall protection devices at buildings and construction sites.
To secure a building, property owners should take all precautionary measures including but not limited to the following:
New Yorkers are encouraged to call 3-1-1 to report non-compliant conditions or 9-1-1 to report emergencies at construction sites or buildings. New Yorkers who suspect a building or property has been structurally compromised should call 9-1-1.
Under §28-301.1 of the Administrative Code of the City of New York, property owners are legally obligated to maintain their properties in a safe condition. Department weather advisories are strictly a courtesy to remind property owners to prepare their properties for inclement weather and cannot be read to suggest that the Department, rather than the property owner, is responsible for maintaining his or her property.
For more information on the Ready New York City campaign, visit www.readynyc.org or call 311.