Tuesday, September 23, 2014

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Approaching Storm Brings Evacuations, Suspended Mass Transit, School Closings

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As Hurricane Sandy approaches New York City, Mayor Michael Bloomberg ordered mandatory evacuations of the city's low-lying Zone A by 7 p.m. Sunday.

The latest forecasts say the storm surges will be between six to 11 feet above normal and the worst of the storms is expected between noon Monday to noon Tuesday.

Staten Island is likely to have the worst power outages because they have the highest density of trees and the borough has a slightly higher elevation than the rest of the city.

Low-lying neighborhoods that were ordered to evacuate, at least in part, included:
Manhattan: Battery Park City, Chelsea, Clinton, East Village, Financial District, Governors Island, Kips Bay, Lincoln Square, Lower East Side, West Village waterfront. Yorkville.
Bronx: City Island, Harding Park, Pelham Bay, Throggs Neck, University Heights.
Brooklyn: Brighton Beach, Brooklyn Heights, Coney Island, DUMBO, Gowanus, Homecrest, Manhattan Beach, Red Hook, Sea Gate, Vinegar Hill.
Queens: Arverne, Baywater, Belle Harbor, Breezy Point, Broad Channel, Edgemere, Far Rockaway, Hamilton Beach, Hammels, Hunters Point, Neponsit, Rockaway Park, Roxbury, Seaside.
Staten Island: Bloomfield, Clifton, Fresh Kills, Great Kills Park, Howland Hook, Huguenot Beach, Livingston, Midland Beach, New Dorp Beach, Oakwood Beach, Old Place, Port Ivory, Port Mobil, Port Richmond, St. George, South Beach, Stapleton, Tompkinsville, Tottenville Beach.

Elevators in public housing projects in Zone A were shut down at 7 p.m. Sunday.

Shelters opened in 76 public schools for residents of low-lying areas and their pets. Teachers were volunteering at these centers.

Hospitals and nursing care facilities in Zone A were not evacuating, as they have emergency generators. Health Department employees made sure that these generators were working.

Find a city evacuation center near your home.

Governor Andrew Cuomo also announced Sunday morning that the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's subway and rail service was shutting down by 7 p.m. Sunday and bus service was ending by 9 p.m. Sunday.

According to MTA Chairman and CEO Joe Lhota, mass transit will remain suspended until 12 hours after the end of the storm, which is likely to be sometime Wednesday.

PATH train service was scheduled to be suspended at 12:01 a.m. Monday.

New Jersey Transit's Atlantic City line closed at 4 p.m. Sunday and all other bus and light rail services were to be suspended by 2 a.m. Monday.

MTA and state officials are afraid that the storm's high winds, which may be between 50 to 70 mph, may damage equipment and want New Yorkers to stay home.

Cuomo said bridges and tunnels will be closed on a case by case basis.

"You don't need to be out and driving around in this, right? You don't need to be figuring out when the bridges close. Is it 59 mph or 60 mph?" said the governor. "You want to stay home, be prepared, enjoy the family, read a book, but you don't need to be on the roads in the middle of this."

The entire MTA system cross-honored tickets beginning at 5 p.m. Sunday until all means of transit shut down.

The Staten Island Railway was operating until the Staten Island Ferry suspends operation. The last ferry boat was scheduled to leave Staten Island at 8 p.m. and depart Manhattan at 8:30 p.m.

The MTA system was also shut down ahead of Tropical Storm Irene's arrival last year.

All Amtrak Northeast Corridor service was scheduled to shut down on Monday.

New York Waterway Ferry and Bus service were also suspended for Monday.

The Port of New York and New Jersey — consisting of Port Newark Container Terminal, Port Elizabeth Marine Terminal, Port Jersey Marine Terminal, Howland Hook Marine Terminal on Staten Island and the Brooklyn-Port Authority Marine Terminal — was to close at midnight Sunday.

There are 1,100 National Guard troops being deployed around the state, with 400 on Long Island and 200 in New York City.

The mayor announced that city public schools will be closed on Monday and alternate-side parking is currently suspended.

Local airports still remain open but flights are being canceled. Travelers should call ahead to determine the status of their flights. The AirTrain to John F. Kennedy International Airport will shut down at 7 p.m. Sunday.

The Office of Emergency Management is working to track the storm and prepare city services.

The New York City Police Department is also mobilizing and the National Guard is being activated to deal with the effects of the storm.

New Yorkers are being urged to prepare go-bags with essentials in the event of an evacuation.

Sandy-Related Closings

The New York Stock Exchange will continue trading on Monday, but NYSE officials say the physical trading floor and stock exchange building will be closed.

Public schools in New York City are closed on Monday, and the Department of Education will determine on that day whether to close schools on Tuesday.

All schools in the CUNY system will be closed Monday. The SUNY Maritime College in the Throggs Neck section of the Bronx will be closed on Monday and Tuesday.

Private colleges and universities that will be closed on Monday include Columbia University, Teachers College at Columbia University, Cooper Union, Metropolitan College of New York, Pace University and New York University.

Juilliard School's library and archives closed at 5 p.m. Sunday. All performances and events on Sunday night and Monday were canceled.

The two TSC Training Academy locations in Long Island City and Manhattan will be closed on Monday and Tuesday.

The Office of Court Administration says all state courts will be closed Monday, except for arraignments and emergency applications. Jurors should not come to the courts.

The courthouses in the Southern District of New York will also be closed Monday.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services offices in the city will be closed Monday.

The September 11th Memorial in Lower Manhattan closed at 4 p.m. Sunday.

The New York Public Library system will be closed Monday.

All 10 national parks in the city will be closed on Monday and Tuesday and city parks are closing at 5 p.m. Sunday.

Police Athletic League Centers will be closed Monday.

All film permits from 7 p.m. Sunday through Monday were revoked by city officials.

All Sunday night and Monday night Broadway performances are canceled. Telecharge, Ticketmaster and theater box offices are offering refunds.

A fundraiser for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS called "Broadway Scares," which was originally scheduled for 9 p.m., is being postponed.

Several Carnegie Hall performances for Sunday and Monday are being canceled or rescheduled. Visit carnegiehall.org for details.

The Metropolitan Opera has also canceled its Monday night performance of "The Marriage Of Figaro." Tickets are being exchanged.

The observation deck of the Empire State Building closed Sunday evening and was to remain closed on Monday.

The U.S. Postal Service is making deliveries on a case-by-case basis.

There will be no Monday trash pick-ups in Zone A areas and everywhere else will be on a case-by-case basis, according to OEM officials.

The mayor is also urging people to avoid the beaches and going into the water, since New Yorkers could put their lives and the lives of emergency responders in danger.

For more information, visit nyc.gov.

Con Ed Gives Advice On Enduring Sandy

Consolidated Edison is also warning its customers about possible power outages.

The utility says extra crews will be on hand to fix any damage to electric, gas and steam systems.

If your power does go out, turn off all your lights and appliances to avoid overloaded circuits later on.

If you see downed electrical wires, do not go near them or touch them with any object.

Also check to make sure your flashlights and battery-operated radio are working and have a supply of extra batteries handy.

Customers can report power outages by calling 1-800-75-CON-ED or visit coned.com.

Hurricanes are not frequent in the city, but it was only 14 months ago that New Yorkers were socked by Irene.

Many of the same precautions were taken, with evacuations, transit shutdowns and closures around the five boroughs.

There was limited damage, but the Rockaways took a beating, with the boardwalks sustaining damage and homes flooded.

Other storms to hit the city include Floyd in 1999 and Agnes in 1972.

The most powerful hurricane in 1938 was a Category 3 storm whose eye crossed over Long Island.

Ten people were killed in New York City and floods knocked out electrical power in all areas above 59th Street in Manhattan and in all of the Bronx.

Mayor Bloomberg, Gov. Cuomo Give Morning Updates On Sandy Prep


Watch Mayor Michael Bloomberg's Sunday morning press conference on preparations for Hurricane Sandy.
TWC News: Approaching Storm Brings Evacuations, Suspended Mass Transit, School Closings
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Watch Governor Andrew Cuomo's Sunday morning press conference on preparations for Hurricane Sandy.

TWC News: Approaching Storm Brings Evacuations, Suspended Mass Transit, School Closings
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Watch Mayor Michael Bloomberg's Sunday afternoon press conference on preparations for Hurricane Sandy.

TWC News: Approaching Storm Brings Evacuations, Suspended Mass Transit, School Closings
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NY1 Viewers' Gallery: Hurricane Sandy


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