Torrential rain spawned significant flooding across northern New Jersey, New York, Philadelphia, and other areas on Sept. 1, as the remnants of Hurricane Ida passed over the region.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio declared an emergency for the city, while officials said on Sept. 2 that at least 22 people had died in New York and New Jersey due to the severe weather, according to The Associated Press.
Storm waters in NYC right now: pic.twitter.com/vmdRxrp5uw
— Joshua Philipp (@JoshJPhilipp) September 2, 2021
“I’m declaring a state of emergency in New York City tonight. We’re enduring [a] historic weather event tonight with record breaking rain across the city, brutal flooding and dangerous conditions on our roads,” he wrote.
The Metropolitan Transit Authority suspended subway service for most areas in the city due to floodwaters entering subway stations and the tracks.
— NTD News (@news_ntd) September 2, 2021
New York and New Jersey residents uploaded video footage on Twitter and other social media sites of flooding inundating cars, flooded subways, backflushing toilets, water going into people’s apartments, and buses driving through high waters.
The Newark International Airport was forced to shut down and suspend flights due to flooding. Video footage shows the baggage claim area entirely covered in floodwaters.
As of the morning of Sept. 2, New York officials said there are travel advisories in effect.
“Avoid non-emergency travel,” city officials wrote on Twitter, noting that “mass transit is very limited and delayed.”
The National Weather Service of New York issued a flash flood emergency for the city, Brooklyn, and Queens, noting that it was the first time in its history that it was forced to do so.
Hero bus driver managed to get us safely through the 3-4 feet of rain coursing down the boulevard, but only seemed to be getting worse.
Finally made it through to higher ground and a fellow passenger exclaims ‘oh no I missed my stop.’ pic.twitter.com/ofrVQhGnhK
— Joe English (@JoeEEnglish) September 2, 2021
“To be clear… this particular warning for NYC is the second time we’ve ever issued a Flash Flood Emergency (It’s the first one for NYC). The first time we’ve issued a Flash Flood Emergency was for Northeast New Jersey a an [sic] hour ago,” the agency wrote.
At least 12 people died in New York, police said, one of them in a car and eight in flooded basement apartments that often serve as relatively affordable homes in one of the nation’s most expensive housing markets.
Officials said at least eight died in New Jersey and three in Pennsylvania’s suburban Montgomery County; one was killed by a falling tree, one drowned in a car, and another in a home. An on-duty state trooper in Connecticut was swept away in his cruiser and later taken to a hospital, state police and local authorities said.
Major flooding along the Schuylkill River in Pennsylvania swamped highways, submerged cars, and disrupted rail service in the Philadelphia area. In a Twitter post, city officials predicted “historic flooding” on Sept. 2, as river levels continue to rise. The riverside community of Manayunk remained largely underwater.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.