(New York) New York woke up Thursday, hit by torrential rains and sudden, historic floods that killed at least fourteen people across the region as the remnants of Hurricane Ida devastated the southern and northeastern United States Caused damage.
Posted on September 1, 2021 at 10:25 pm Updated September 2, 2021 at 12:29 pm
Nicolas REVISE Agence France-Presse
The mayor of the American megalopolis, Bill de Blasio, announced during a press conference that “nine New Yorkers” lost their lives during the night, while Elizabeth City Hall in neighboring New Jersey told AFP that four people died in this historic one Floods, in the same building in the city. But the number could be higher, with US media reporting a total of 22 deaths.
Among the New York victims are a 2-year-old and an 86-year-old.
Streets, avenues, and expressways were suddenly turned into torrents, both in the boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens and in Westchester County north of the city. In this upscale coastal region, dozens of vehicles were still under water in the early hours of the morning, and houses with finished basements are being ravaged by brackish and muddy water, sometimes up to 60 cm high.
The gigantic New York subway system came to a standstill Thursday morning after many stations were flooded.
The US Weather Service NWS recorded an all-time high of 80 mm of rain in one hour in Central Park.
“I’m 50 years old and have never seen so much rain,” says Metodija Mihajlov, restaurateur on the very chic Upper West Side, near the famous park, New York’s green lung. “It was like being in the jungle, a tropical rain. Incredible, “added the dealer.
In the middle of the night, the new governor of New York State, Kathy Hochul, declared a “state of emergency” after the “major” floods in all of the city’s border districts, which could affect around 20 million. Bill de Blasio, the mayor of New York, a city already hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, lamented a “historic meteorological event” in a tweet and also declared “a state of emergency”.
On Thursday morning, while many New Yorkers were clearing their basements, several voices attributed the event to climate change, while New York had already suffered very heavy rains in late August when Storm Henri passed.
“Global warming is just around the corner and it will only get worse if we do nothing,” warned New York Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer.
Hundreds of flights were canceled at New York’s Newark, LaGuardia and JFK airports. A video showed a flooded terminal in Newark.
According to the NWS, this state of emergency caused by flash floods is a first in the history of the megalopolis, which was hit by Hurricane Sandy in October 2012.
Impressive tornadoes and floods have also been observed in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Maryland. In New Jersey, Governor Phil Murphy has declared a state of emergency.
The international water tennis
A surreal scene played out on Wednesday night in Flushing Meadows when rain swept over a well-roofed tennis court, interrupting a US Open game between South African Kevin Anderson and Argentinian Diego Schwartzman. The water flowed through the four corners of the retractable hall roof, which was erected in 2018 in order to be able to play precisely despite the rain.
At the end of August, New York and the surrounding area were hit by Storm Henri. Bad weather on August 21 had prematurely ended a major concert in Central Park that was meant to symbolize a return to a more festive life after the coronavirus pandemic.
Hurricane Ida, downgraded to a post-tropical cyclone, brought heavy rains with it that led to widespread flooding on the east coast of the United States. It is then expected to continue its journey north, heading to New England on Thursday.
President Joe Biden will travel to Louisiana on Friday, where Hurricane Ida, which landed there on Sunday, destroyed buildings and left more than a million homes without power.
Hurricanes are a recurring phenomenon in the southern United States. But warming the ocean’s surface helps make storms stronger, scientists warn.
In particular, they pose an increasingly significant risk to coastal communities that are victims of underwater phenomena exacerbated by sea level rise.