The Heat Is Online

Downpour Strands Thousands of NYC Commuters

Storm cripples NYC transit system

 

One death reported; trees also downed in what could have been tornado

 

The Associated Press, Aug 8, 2007

 

NEW YORK - Torrential rain blamed for at least one death flooded subways and rail lines and delayed flights early Wednesday at New York's three major airports and thousands of commuters were stranded for two hours or more.

 

The thunderstorms prompted brief tornado warnings and flash flood warnings before giving way to a sunny, humid day. Wind and heavy rain toppled trees onto cars and streets, caused scattered power outages and left some shops shuttered and businesses struggling with shortages of workers.

 

A woman whose car got stuck in an underpass was killed when her car was struck by another one from behind, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said.

 

The National Weather Service was sending an investigator to Brooklyn to determine if a tornado had struck, meteorologist Brian Ciemnecki said.

 

All subway lines in the city experienced delays or diversions, and some rail lines to Grand Central Terminal and some rail routes from New Jersey into Manhattan were shut down for more than an hour.

 

"We have been advising customers to avoid the system if possible because there is extensive flooding on the tracks," NYC Transit spokeswoman Marisa Baldel said.

 

Passengers on one train to Grand Central were told they had to get off at a station in the Bronx and walk to a nearby subway station. Some trudged through the streets in their drenched business suits, only to be told at the subway that those trains weren't running either.

 

There were delays of up to an hour and a half at John F. Kennedy International Airport and about an hour at LaGuardia International Airport due to the storms, said Alan Hicks, spokesman for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

 

In south-central and southeastern Nebraska, 4 inches of rain fell in an hour in some areas. Authorities in Surprise reported the Big Blue River had overflowed its banks and fish were swimming on the water flowing on state Highway 12.

 

More flood warnings were issued Wednesday in northern Illinois, where flooding forced dozens to evacuate their homes a day earlier. The water-logged region already had been declared a state disaster area.

 

The rainstorms set up an exceptionally steamy afternoon in New York. The weather service issued a heat advisory that warned of temperatures that could climb to 101 because of the muggy weather.

 

© 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. © 2007 MSNBC

 

 

Rainstorm Cripples Commute in NYC Area

 

The Associated Press, Aug 8, 2007

 

NEW YORK - Torrential rain flooded subways and rail lines and delayed flights early Wednesday at New York's three major airports and thousands of commuters were stranded for two hours or more.

 

The thunderstorms prompted brief tornado warnings and flash flood warnings before giving way to a sunny, humid day. Wind and heavy rain toppled trees onto cars and streets, caused scattered power outages and left some shops shuttered and businesses struggling with shortages of workers.

 

The National Weather Service was sending an investigator to Brooklyn to determine if a tornado had struck, meteorologist Brian Ciemnecki said.

 

All subway lines in the city experienced delays or diversions, and some rail lines to Grand Central Terminal and some rail routes from New Jersey into Manhattan were shut down for more than an hour.

 

"We have been advising customers to avoid the system if possible because there is extensive flooding on the tracks," NYC Transit spokeswoman Marisa Baldel said.

 

Passengers on one train to Grand Central were told they had to get off at a station in the Bronx and walk to a nearby subway station. Some trudged through the streets in their drenched business suits, only to be told at the subway that those trains weren't running either.

 

There were delays of up to an hour and a half at John F. Kennedy International Airport and about an hour at LaGuardia International Airport due to the storms, said Alan Hicks, spokesman for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

 

The rainstorms set up an exceptionally steamy afternoon. The weather service issued a heat advisory that warned of temperatures that could climb to 101 because of the muggy weather.

 

Copyright 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved