Here's how the MTA says it's preparing for Monday's storms after last week's flooding

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Monday, July 12, 2021
Why are subways flooding?
The scene that played out during severe weather Thursday, with people wading through waist-deep water, is alarming and dangerous.

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- The Metropolitan Transportation Authority says it is taking a series of measures to prepare for storms forecast to bring heavy rain and high wind gusts to the New York City area on Monday.

Videos of water pouring into subway stations during storms in New York City with people wading through waist-deep water last week caused a lot of concern.

The MTA is urging commuters to avoid entering flooded areas. The mass transit agency is also making plans to make sure storm-related problems are kept to a minimum.

New York City Subway

Subway personnel will be staged at key locations to facilitate response to any weather-related event.

Crews will inspect track drains in flood-prone areas and check and stage track pumps and storm boxes prior to the storms. Chainsaws will be prepared, fueled and tested for possible debris clearance.

New York City Buses

MTA personnel will monitor routes for known flooding situations, and have detours prepared. Extra personnel are on standby in the event of service disruptions or subway shutdowns.

All bus facilities will have roof drains checked and ensure they are clear of debris and any loose materials will be secured. Emergency generators are being checked and will be ready in the event of a power outage.

Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North Railroad

The MTA's railroads are pre-positioning crews and diesel locomotives to be in position to minimize service disruptions.

Additional personnel will be added this afternoon through the overnight hours to identify and quickly address possible track, signal and power challenges caused by flooding, washouts, downed trees and other potential storm damage. Personnel will survey and clear drainage areas where necessary, fortify key locations and look for trees requiring removal as well any track structures requiring attention.

Railroad crews have equipment on hand to be able to respond quickly as conditions warrant - chainsaws for clearing downed trees, pumps in the event of flooded areas, identifying locations and availability of supplies for replacing damaged utility poles and crossing gates.

The railroads have worked aggressively to proactively protect infrastructure, tackling poor drainage locations, improving vegetation management adjacent to tracks and strengthening and replacing utility poles, among other actions.

MTA Bridges and Tunnels

MTA Bridges and Tunnels personnel are checking all flood-prone locations for debris and will continue to monitor throughout the storm. Personnel will also monitor wind conditions and implement appropriate traffic or speed restrictions if necessary, based on conditions.

Maintenance teams are on standby throughout the storm to respond to any incidents or emergencies.

The MTA is also encouraging customers to take extra precautions when traveling during storms or avoid unnecessary travel.

"If you see an area of a station with standing water, please avoid that specific area. There are several entrances at most stations - it is rare for all to be experiencing flooding. If you need to use a specific entrance or stairwell, please know if water from the street is pouring into a station, it may take drains a few moments to catch up and for water to recede," said Demetrius Crichlow, Acting Senior Vice President for Subways, New York City Transit.

Customers who must travel are encouraged to check for real time service information.

RELATED | Motorists rescued from flooded Major Deegan, subways turned into pools

Video captures a rescue in progress after severe storms caused major flooding on the Major Deegan Expressway.


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