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First ever flash flood emergency issued for NYC, northeast getting hammered with Ida remnants


NEW YORK (KDVR/WPIX) — A flash flood emergency has been issued by the National Weather Service for the first time ever in New York City. According to the NWS, Central Park observed 3.15 inches of rain in one hour, from 8:51 p.m. EST to 9:51 p.m. EST.

A flash flood emergency was also issued for northeast New Jersey as heavy rain moves in from the remnants of Hurricane Ida.

A flash flood emergency is issued in exceedingly rare situations when extremely heavy rain creates a severe threat to human life, and catastrophic damage from a flash flood is currently happening or will happen soon.

Videos and photos from around NYC Wednesday night show streets flooded, leaving cars and buses trapped in high water.

Video also shows water pouring into the 28th Street station.

At 10:15 p.m. EST, a Metropolitan Transit Authority spokesperson said people should not travel on subways. Officials said excessive amounts of water had entered tracks. Damage was caused by excessive amounts of water entering some stations.

Several other northeastern states have been blanketed with heavy rain and winds causing damage.

The NWS confirmed at least one tornado and social media posts showed homes reduced to rubble in Mullica Hill, a southern New Jersey county just outside Philadelphia. Other video showed water rushing through Newark Liberty International Airport as the storm moved into New York.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which operates the airport, tweeted at 10:30 p.m. EST that all flights were suspended and all parking lots were closed due to severe flooding.

The roof collapsed at the Postal Service building in Kearny, New Jersey, with people inside, police Sgt. Chris Levchak said. Rescue crews were on scene into the night, with no immediate word on the number of people or severity of injuries.

Gov. Phil Murphy declared a state of emergency in all of New Jersey’s 21 counties, urging people to stay off the flooded roads.

Soaking rains prompted the evacuations of thousands of people after water reached dangerous levels at a dam near Johnstown, a Pennsylvania town nicknamed Flood City.

Ida caused countless school and business closures in Pennsylvania. About 150 roadways maintained by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation were closed and many smaller roadways also were impassable. Several thousand customers were still without power late Wednesday night.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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