Why Has New York Declared A State Of Emergency?

New York: New York City was plunged into chaos on Friday as relentless downpours unleashed catastrophic flash flooding across the metropolis. A colossal storm system stalled over the city overnight, triggering flood watches and warnings for the five boroughs, upstate New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut.
Deluge drowns New York
The deluge has dumped three to six inches of rain on the city, with more torrential rainfall expected over the next 24 hours, according to the National Weather Service. Some meteorologists have sounded the alarm, warning that this flooding event has the potential to be “historic” due to the sheer intensity of the rainfall.

New York City emergency officials have issued a travel advisory as heavy rain and flooding hits https://t.co/E30q97yK2O pic.twitter.com/xw1EgGvXmM
— philip lewis (@Phil_Lewis_) September 29, 2023

City grinds to a halt
The severe weather paralyzed the city, with authorities urging New Yorkers to avoid travel. The subway system, a lifeline for millions, was largely shut down, and numerous roads and highways succumbed to rising floodwaters. Metro North trains ground to a halt, and LaGuardia Airport’s Terminal A was forced to close due to flooding, resulting in a cascade of flight delays at both LaGuardia and JFK airports.

NYC Williamsburg, Brooklyn is completely flooded due to heavy rainfall. #flashflood #flashflooding #flooding #flood #newyork #newyorkcity #nyc #brooklyn #rain #rainstorm #storm #downpour #streetflooding pic.twitter.com/2g9IVKzsET
— Shadab Javed (@JShadab1) September 29, 2023

State of emergency declared
Governor Kathy Hochul declared a state of emergency covering New York City, Long Island, and the Hudson Valley. The move came with a strong focus on the safety of basement homes, a response to tragic drownings during Hurricane Ida in 2021. During an interview, Gov. Hochul emphasized the importance of planning escape routes and not waiting until the water levels rise dangerously.

Subways in #Brooklyn turning into rivers. #NYwxPlease follow for more updates. #flashflood #flashflooding #flooding #flood #newyork #newyorkcity #nyc #brooklyn #rain #rainstorm #storm #downpour #streetflooding pic.twitter.com/EAigdg14Du
— Shadab Javed (@JShadab1) September 29, 2023

Flash flood vulnerability zones
Forecasters have predicted a rainfall rate of 1-2.5 inches per hour in specific areas, creating a heightened risk of flash flooding. Vulnerable zones include Manhattan’s Lower East Side, East Village, Soho, and Midtown; Coney Island, Rockaway Beach, Crown Heights in Brooklyn; and Jackson Heights, Forest Hills, and LaGuardia Airport in Queens.

Things started getting difficult #Brooklyn gets flooded with waters.Please share this. Follow for more updates. #flashflood #flashflooding #flooding #flood #newyork #newyorkcity #nyc #brooklyn #rain #rainstorm #storm #downpour #streetflooding pic.twitter.com/1nmceycM1b
— Shadab Javed (@JShadab1) September 29, 2023

Subway shutdown and road closures
Manhattan Borough President Mark D. Levine highlighted the subway system’s dire situation, with disruptions on every line. The heavy rain not only flooded roadways but also resulted in likely flash flooding. The New York Police Department reported “full closures” at the FDR Drive and Delancey Street on the east side of the city, while the Belt Parkway near Coney Island faced shutdowns.

🚨TRAVEL ADVISORY🚨issued by New York City emergency officials
-Flash flood warnings issued in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and Long Island
-Subways- “only extremely limited” service available -MTA
-LaGuardia Airport -flooding cut off access to Terminal A pic.twitter.com/57VNAH8dsj
— Biasedly Unbiased (@DiRealDan) September 29, 2023

Life-threatening flash flood warning
The National Weather Service issued a flash flood warning that underscored the gravity of the situation, labeling it “dangerous and life-threatening.” Emergency alerts were dispatched to cellphones across the city, urging residents not to travel unless fleeing flood-prone areas or under evacuation orders.
As New York grapples with this extraordinary flooding event, the potential for a historic rain event continues to loom, serving as a stark reminder of the ever-present challenges posed by extreme weather events in our modern world.