Cuomo Announces Multiple Bridge Closures As Sandy Wreaks Havoc Across Region
NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – All East Side crossings have been shut down due to severe flooding and strong wind gusts.
The Queens Midtown Tunnel was closed Monday evening.
Sandy is no longer a hurricane, according to CBS 2’s Lonnie Quinn. The superstorm is now post-tropical but continues to batter the Tri-State Area, prompting bridge and tunnel closures around New York City.
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey announced LaGuardia Airport has been closed until further notice. Thousands of flights had been canceled at the area’s airport all day Monday anyway, though the airports had all remained open.
The Goethals Bridge has closed to traffic and at 7:30 p.m., Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the closing of the RFK Bridge as a result of 100 mph wind gusts.
Gov. Cuomo earlier announced the closures of Throgs Neck, Whitestone, Henry Hudson, Verrazano, George Washington, Marine Parkway, Cross Bay Veterans Memorial bridges as of 7 p.m. The Tappan Zee Bridge was closed at 4 p.m.
The FDR has been closed from the Battery to 155th Street.
“We are sensitive to the impact this will have on travelers, but safety is our highest priority and, under current conditions, gusts sweeping across the bridge could flip vehicles or cause serious multi-vehicle accidents,” said Cuomo.
Those aren’t the only bridge closures. The four East River bridges in Manhattan also closed at 7, including the Brooklyn, Manhattan, Williamsburg and Ed Koch Queensboro bridge. In addition, the Joseph P. Addabbo Memorial Bridge in Queens is being closed along with the Cross Bay Bridge.
In Mamaroneck, village officials ordered all people who live along the water out by 10 a.m. Moments after the deadline, the water started to spill over the harbor and right onto people’s lawns, WCBS 880’s Monica Miller reported.
Emergency crews have been driving through communities telling people to evacuate.
Some residents piled up sandbags and taped up windows before fleeing to higher ground
There is a shelter set up at Mamaroneck High School, which is prepared to remain open for the next few days, Miller reported.
As of 3 p.m., more than 2,600 homes were without power in Westchester County.
In New Rochelle, residents who live along the water there are already experiencing some of the worst flooding they’ve ever seen.
“Irene wasn’t half what this is doing already, so it’s going to be ugly I think,” residents Maynard Anderson told CBS 2’s Sean Hennessey.
Anderson said he just finished repairing his home from the damage it sustained in Irene and now he’s worried things will be even worse this time around.
“Of course the water, the surge of the water. As I explained to you before, Irene, it only came up to the Tiki huts but already it has surpassed that and we’re worried about that full moon high tide tonight. I checked the Internet, it’s supposed to hit us about 12 midnight, 12:11, so we’re worried,” Anderson told Hennessey.
Anderson said he and his son were planning to stay in their house for as long as possible but will follow any evacuation orders. In the meantime, he said he’s preparing his home to weather the storm.
“I’m going to go and get some sandbags, I’m going to plywood the lower level…and then [sandbags] by the garage,” Anderson told Hennessey.
The United Way of Westchester and Putnam announced its 211 helpline will remain open throughout the duration of the storm to provide residents with information on shelters, evacuation routes, road closures, recovery services, power outages and other disaster-related services.
The call center is staffed with people who speak more than 250 languages, United Way said.
The 211 line is available 24 hours a day during storm emergencies.
Information is available by calling 2-1-1 or through the organization’s website by clicking here.