NEW YORK - (AP) - New York City officials say they are on alertahead of Hurricane Earl, but they only expect to see side effectsas the main activity stays out over open water.

Office of Emergency Management Commissioner Joseph Bruno saysthe city could see rain and high winds, along with possible soilerosion on the beaches and flooding along the oceanside coasts ofBrooklyn and Queens.

Emergency officials are in contact with nursing homes andhospitals in the seaside zones from Coney Island to the Rockaways.

The city has also been working to clear basins that typicallyflood.

The Red Cross is also standing by if evacuation shelters areneeded.

Bruno says officials don't believe much of its preparations willbe necessary. But he says the city has to prepare for the worstcase scenario.

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