The US simply can’t catch a break when it comes to weather disasters lately. The most recent storm to cause problems for the United States is Ida, a hurricane that degraded into a tropical storm as it swept out of the Atlantic and across the Eastern Seaboard.
The storm drenched much of the East Coast, and it caused unprecedented, historic flooding in New York City. The Big Apple has been battered over the past year by disease outbreaks, political scandals, and, now, historic weather phenomena.
The rainfall totals Thursday morning absolutely stunned New Yorkers, with over three inches of rain falling in Central Park in just a single hour. The National Weather Service issued a flash flood warning overnight Wednesday for New York City. Queens and Brooklyn alike each saw streets become completely flooded, with everything from debris to cars floating down rivers that were once boulevards.
People living in basements and on the first floor of buildings were instructed to seek higher ground, with floodwaters rushing into low-lying areas and soaking everything in sight. The Brooklyn Queens Expressway was completely flooded overnight, and subway stations across the city saw several inches of rainfall seeping onto the tracks.
Authorities in New York City have been responding to countless calls about the dangers of the situation. The NYPD told reporters that, by the time of this writing, the flooding has resulted in at least twenty-two deaths. Videos and images of the terrifying amounts of water flowing through New York City streets circulated widely on social media Wednesday night and Thursday morning.
Videos of fast-moving floodwaters bursting into apartments, sweeping household objects and debris along the way, spread across the internet as people marveled at the sheer overwhelming volume of water falling over the city.
A large swath of land in the New York metropolitan area is under a flood warning at the time of this writing. A region spanning from parts of Long Island and into New Jersey and as far north as White Plains is under a flood warning and a severe thunderstorm warning.
Residents are encouraged to remember the basic flood safety adage “turn around, don’t drown”. Never attempt to ford floodwaters: they can be fast-moving and powerful, and you could easily be knocked down and swept away by the water before anyone is able to help you. Don’t hesitate to contact the authorities if you need help.