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Commuters brace for LIRR strike after negotiations collapse

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MINEOLA, N.Y. (PIX11) -- The strike is top of mind for commuters not just on Long Island, but also for commuters in Queens. A whopping 300,000 people might need a new way to get to work in just a matter of days.

The countdown is on until 12:01 AM on Sunday when the strike is expected to occur.

Service could slow as early as Wednesday.

The MTA contingency plans are in place.

According to the MTA, a free ferry service would operate from Glen Cove to East 34th Street in Midtown.

The ferry would do three westbound runs in the morning and three eastbound at night. They would be able to carry 1,000 customers and trips would take 40 minutes.

Dedicated park-and-ride lots would be established in Queens as well as Nassau and Suffolk counties, to provide more transportation options than were available in 1994.

These lots would be monitored by spotters using social media to send real-time alerts about how many spaces are available.

There will also be busing, and other ways to get to work,  but the MTA has said nothing will replace the LIRR.

Hospitals are also making plans in the event of a strike.

A spokesperson with Mount Sinai told us:

“In the event of a strike by LIRR workers, Mount Sinai would implement contingency plans to ensure the safety of our patients, staff and the continuity of medical services. These steps would include maintaining appropriate staffing levels; continuing to provide patient intake, care and discharge services; and arranging for transportation, food and overnight accommodations for Mount Sinai Health System employees as needed."

The NewYork Presbyterian Hospital is also preparing for the strike.

"As a leading healthcare provider for the region, NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital maintains contingency plans for this and other potential situations.  These plans include arrangements for transporting essential staff to our locations and for housing staff on site, if necessary," a spokesperson for the hospital told PIX11.

A lot of plans are being made everywhere. Still, commuters don't seem to be finding  comfort.

For a full list of MTA contingency plans, please follow the link to the MTA website.