NY hit by heavy rain and wind


Summary

At least one person has died in the wake of torrential rain, which has flooded subways and railway lines and delayed flights at New York's three major airports.

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Wind and heavy rain toppled trees onto cars and streets, caused scattered power outages and left some shops shuttered and businesses struggling with staff shortages.

VIDEO: Stormy weather

Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said officers had to use crowd-control tactics to keep the peace.

Groups of police directed commuters from subway stations where trains weren't running and at bus stops jammed with people jostling to get on board.

A woman who got stuck in an underpass was killed when her car was struck by another vehicle, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said.

The mayor said buildings damaged in parts of Brooklyn included a roof ripped off a church.

"I don't know that God had rush hour in mind when the storms hit," Mr Bloomberg said at news conference in a Brooklyn area where the National Weather Service was trying to determine whether a tornado had struck.

Water rescue

The US Coast Guard rescued six boaters from New York and Israel who spent more than a dozen hours adrift in heavy fog off eastern Long Island.

The boaters, who range in age from 22 to 25, were in good condition and did not require hospitalisation.

All subway lines in New York experienced delays or diversions, and some rail lines to Grand Central Terminal and some rail routes from New Jersey into Manhattan were shut down for more than an hour.

The rains also forced CBS television's The Early Show, a morning news show, to move to another studio less than 40 minutes after water poured through the ceiling.

More than 40 people rushed onto Fifth Avenue in the rain and hailed cabs, racing to get to CBS' broadcast studio more than six long blocks west for the show's opening at 7am.

"We made an almost instantaneous decision to bolt," said Michael Bass, the show's senior executive producer.

Heavy rains elsewhere

Elsewhere, 10cm of rain fell in an hour in parts of Nebraska.

Authorities in Surprise, 113 km west of Omaha, reported the Big Blue River had overflowed and fish were swimming in the water flowing on state Highway 12.

More flood warnings were issued today in northern Illinois, where flooding a day earlier had forced dozens to evacuate their homes.

The waterlogged region already had been declared a state disaster area.

The rainstorms brought no relief from heat and humidity, and the weather service posted heat advisories from the Plains to the East Coast.

The heat index, based on a combination of temperature and humidity, could reach 40 to 43 degrees Celsius in parts of Kansas, the agency said.

In New York's crowded streets, the index was expected to top 38 Celsius.


At least one person has died in the wake of torrential rain, which has flooded subways and railway lines and delayed flights at New York's three major airports.

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Wind and heavy rain toppled trees onto cars and streets, caused scattered power outages and left some shops shuttered and businesses struggling with staff shortages.

VIDEO: Stormy weather

Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said officers had to use crowd-control tactics to keep the peace.

Groups of police directed commuters from subway stations where trains weren't running and at bus stops jammed with people jostling to get on board.

A woman who got stuck in an underpass was killed when her car was struck by another vehicle, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said.

The mayor said buildings damaged in parts of Brooklyn included a roof ripped off a church.

"I don't know that God had rush hour in mind when the storms hit," Mr Bloomberg said at news conference in a Brooklyn area where the National Weather Service was trying to determine whether a tornado had struck.

Water rescue

The US Coast Guard rescued six boaters from New York and Israel who spent more than a dozen hours adrift in heavy fog off eastern Long Island.

The boaters, who range in age from 22 to 25, were in good condition and did not require hospitalisation.

All subway lines in New York experienced delays or diversions, and some rail lines to Grand Central Terminal and some rail routes from New Jersey into Manhattan were shut down for more than an hour.

The rains also forced CBS television's The Early Show, a morning news show, to move to another studio less than 40 minutes after water poured through the ceiling.

More than 40 people rushed onto Fifth Avenue in the rain and hailed cabs, racing to get to CBS' broadcast studio more than six long blocks west for the show's opening at 7am.

"We made an almost instantaneous decision to bolt," said Michael Bass, the show's senior executive producer.

Heavy rains elsewhere

Elsewhere, 10cm of rain fell in an hour in parts of Nebraska.

Authorities in Surprise, 113 km west of Omaha, reported the Big Blue River had overflowed and fish were swimming in the water flowing on state Highway 12.

More flood warnings were issued today in northern Illinois, where flooding a day earlier had forced dozens to evacuate their homes.

The waterlogged region already had been declared a state disaster area.

The rainstorms brought no relief from heat and humidity, and the weather service posted heat advisories from the Plains to the East Coast.

The heat index, based on a combination of temperature and humidity, could reach 40 to 43 degrees Celsius in parts of Kansas, the agency said.

In New York's crowded streets, the index was expected to top 38 Celsius.