New York City faced significant disruption on Friday due to heavy rainfall that led to flash flooding. After a week of continuous rain, torrential downpours caused streets to become inundated and subway services to be disrupted in the nation’s most populous metropolis.
The National Weather Service issued a flash flood warning for New York City, which was expected to remain in effect until midday. Some areas had already received over 2 inches of rain by Friday morning, with an additional 3 inches forecasted within hours. Certain locations, including Brooklyn, lower Manhattan, and John F. Kennedy International Airport, reported up to 6 inches of rainfall, posing a potentially life-threatening situation.
Meteorologist Zack Taylor of the National Weather Service’s Weather Prediction Center emphasized the dangers of travel and recommended that people avoid venturing out until the weather system moves away from the coast, expected later on Friday evening.
New York Governor Kathy Hochul declared a state of emergency for New York City, Long Island, and the Hudson Valley in response to the flooding. She urged residents to take precautions for their safety and advised against attempting to drive on flooded roads.
The flooding had a significant impact on New York’s transportation infrastructure, with the Metropolitan Transportation Authority reporting major disruptions to the subway system and the Metro North commuter rail service. Several subway lines were suspended, and numerous stations were closed.
Across the broader New York metropolitan area and along the East Coast, approximately 18 million people were under various flood warnings, watches, and advisories issued by the weather service.
Photographs and videos from different parts of New York depicted submerged vehicles on neighborhood streets and water inundating subway stations, causing disruptions during the morning commute for millions of residents. In Hoboken, New Jersey, just across the Hudson River from lower Manhattan, many southern routes into the city were submerged, and recently installed flood gates were activated to block flooded roads. These gates were part of the city’s infrastructure designed to manage the challenges posed by flooding.