September 2 (Reuters) – The governors of New York and New Jersey declared a state of emergency on Wednesday evening as record-breaking rains from Tropical Storm Ida resulted in flooding and dangerous conditions on the roads, with media reporting state of at least nine deaths.
“I am declaring a state of emergency to help New Yorkers affected by tonight’s storm,” New York Governor Kathy Hochul said on Twitter.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio called Wednesday night’s flooding and weather a “historic weather event.” The National Weather Service first issued a flash flood emergency in New York City.
At least one person was killed when flooding flooded the New Jersey town of Passaic, Mayor Hector Lora told CNN.
NBC New York reported that another person had died in New Jersey and seven had died in New York, including a 2-year-old boy. Local media reported that people were trapped in their basements as the storm sent water through the city.
Lora said the body of a man in his 60s was recovered from the floodwaters. The vehicle the man was in was washed away and firefighters were swept under the vehicle, preventing them from reaching it, CNN reported.
Almost all of New York City’s subway lines were suspended Wednesday evening as Ida’s remains brought torrential rains and the threat of flash floods and tornadoes to parts of northern central America. Atlantic, CNN reported earlier.
All non-emergency vehicles have been banned from New York streets until 5 a.m. (9 a.m. GMT) due to the weather, city officials said on Twitter.
At least five flash flood emergencies were issued Wednesday night by the National Weather Service, stretching from west Philadelphia to northern New Jersey.
Earlier in the night, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy also declared a state of emergency. He wrote on Twitter that 81,740 power outages had been reported as of Wednesday evening.
A tornado swept through Gloucester County in New Jersey, damaging several homes, according to CNN affiliate WPVI.
All New Jersey Transit rail services except the Atlantic City Rail Line have been suspended due to extreme weather conditions, the service said on its website.
Damage from Storm Ida stunned officials Wednesday, three days after the powerful hurricane hit southern Louisiana, and reconnaissance flights revealed entire communities devastated by wind and flooding. Read more
Storm-spawned tornadoes have ravaged parts of Pennsylvania and New Jersey, images have shown on social media.
Newark Liberty Airport in New Jersey said on Twitter that it was experiencing “severe flooding.” It said it resumed its “limited flight operations” around midnight after all flight activities were suspended on Wednesday evening.
Social media images showed water gushing from New York City subway platforms and trains. Metro service was “extremely limited” due to the flooding, the Metropolitan Transit Authority said.
First responders evacuated people from the subway system, Metropolitan Transportation Authority acting chairman and CEO Janno Lieber said in a statement.
De Blasio urged people to stay at home.
“Please avoid the streets tonight and let our first responders and emergency services do their job. If you plan to go out, don’t. Avoid subways. Avoid the roads. Don’t drive in these. heavy vehicles stay indoors, âhe wrote on Twitter.
Report by Kanishka Singh in Bengaluru; additional reporting by Ann Maria Shibu and Akriti Sharma in Bengaluru and Sarah Morland in Gdansk; Editing by Christopher Cushing, Shri Navaratnam and Hugh Lawson
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