(New York) New York wakes up Thursday in a daze, hit by torrential rainfall and sudden historic flooding, killing eight as the remains of Hurricane Ida, which wreaked havoc in the southern and northeastern states.
Posted on September 1, 2021 at 10:25 pm Updated September 2, 2021 at 8:56 am
Nicolas REVISE Agence France-Presse
According to the New York police, at least eight people died overnight from Wednesday to Thursday due to the unprecedented flash floods for the megalopolis – in many districts and suburbs of the economic and cultural capital of the USA.
Streets, avenues, highways were suddenly turned into torrents in both Brooklyn, Queens and 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”.
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. Governor Phil Murphy also declared a state of emergency in New Jersey. One death was reported there.
US Open flooded
A surreal scene took place in Flushing Meadows on Wednesday evening when rain swept over a well-roofed tennis court and interrupted a second round match at the US Open between South African Kevin Anderson and Argentine 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.
“The post-tropical cyclone Ida brings heavy rains and sudden floods that can pose a deadly danger on its way,” warned the American hurricane center NHC on Wednesday. Ida is then expected to continue her 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.