On September 1, video footage of intense flooding in New York began to make rounds. Cars floated in the streets, one third rail caught fire within a subway station, water poured into apartments. The disaster that hit Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and New Jersey is the remnants of Hurricane Ida, the Category 4 tropical storm that ripped through southern Louisiana earlier this week.
Among those lost were a 2-year-old boy, a 48-year-old woman and a 50-year-old man. They were found in a New York home.
According to The Guardian, New Jersey has also reported five deaths.
Both New Jersey and New York have declared states of emergency and this marked the first-ever flash flood warning in the state of New York.
Read ESSENCE’s reporting on Hurricane Ida here.
Christiaan Triebert, an investigator for the New York Times, shared a video of a Chelsea subway station filling with water. The Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) has since released a statement calling for the limitation of travel as they recover. At least 3 inches of rain fell in Central Park in just one hour.
Another viral clip showed a man on a raft, floating through the flood waters while smoking hookah.
According to Hydrological Solutions, a provider of water control products, “Floods often carry waste from sewers or farms, filling the water with all sorts of nasty bacteria. Even floodwaters that haven’t picked up biohazards can contain potentially dangerous bacteria, especially legionella, which can give you a potentially deadly strain of pneumonia.”
“We are seeing way too many reports of water rescues and stranded motorists,” the New York office of the National Weather Service wrote on Twitter. “Do not drive through flooded roadways. You do not know how deep the water is and it is too dangerous.”