Tag Archives: blizzard

Major snowfall, freezing temps target NYC


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/File photo

Updated 11:40 p.m.

New York City was set for its second significant storm of the month Tuesday, with heavy snowfall and freezing temperatures predicted.

This storm is on pace to be larger than the previous storm, Mayor Bill de Blasio said at a press briefing Tuesday night.

The National Weather Service (NWS) issued a winter storm warning from 12 p.m. Tuesday until 6 a.m. Wednesday. The snow, however, was already falling by the morning commute.

By the evening, the storm had intensified and 10 to 14 inches of flakes are now expected in the city, the mayor said.

Governor Andrew Cuomo Tuesday afternoon declared a State of Emergency for New York City as well as Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester and Rockland counties.

De Blasio said he wanted  “New Yorkers to stay in to the maximum amount possible this evening” so the sanitation department can do its work.

“The safest thing to do tonight is stay home,” he said.

The New York City Department of Sanitation (DSNY) issued a snow alert, starting at 9 a.m. Tuesday.

More than 2,000 sanitation are out now, working 12-hour shifts, and 450 salt spreaders have already been deployed, the mayor said. There are also more than 1,700 vehicles with snow plows that are being deployed as the snow accumulates.

To track the progress of DSNY clearing operations throughout the five boroughs, click here.

Alternate side parking is suspended Wednesday to facilitate with snow removal, but payment at parking meters remains in effect

Trash and recycling pickups are also suspended for Wednesday.

The New York City Office of Emergency Management (OEM) is warning motorists to drive slowly, monitor weather and traffic, use major streets or highways, and have the name and number of at least one local towing service. A hazardous travel advisory is in effect for Wednesday.

For anyone traveling on public transportation, the MTA has plans in place to deal with any adverse weather conditions.

After express subway service was “curtailed” after the evening rush hour Tuesday, the MTA said service should be near normal Wednesday, with express service restored during the morning rush hour. Buses will operate at 80 to 90 percent of normal levels depending on customer demand, and service will be subject to delays based on local road conditions.

Fastrack work on the E,F,M,R Queens Blvd. Line has been canceled for the remainder of the week to free up personnel for snow fighting and cleanup after the storm.

The Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) reduced service after 8 p.m. Tuesday on a branch-by-branch basis. After 8 p.m., service was also reduced on the Metro-North.

On Wednesday, Metro-North will operate 80 to 85 percent of its normal weekday service, with some trains combined and some delays possible based on the condition of track and power systems. The LIRR will operate on a weekend schedule.

For more information, or to see any additional MTA service changes, click here.

The snow is not expected to taper off until 3 or 4 a.m. Wednesday.

The city’s public schools, however, will be open tomorrow, Chancellor Carmen Fariña announced late Tuesday night.

The mayor cautioned New Yorkers about the bitter cold that is accompanying the snow. Temperatures will be very low and wind chills will make it worse, he said.

The low Tuesday night will be around 19,  but with gusts as high as 33 mph, wind chill values will be low as -11, according to NWS.

Though the snow will end by Wednesday, highs will remain in the high teens and lows in the single digits and teens for the next few days, with wind chill factors below zero.

 

Winter Storm Hercules photos


| editorial@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Angy Altamirano

Check out our photo gallery showing the aftermath of the January 2014 snow storm in Queens.

If you want The Queens Courier to include your blizzard photos in our gallery, let us know by tweeting them to @queenscourier or by posting them on our Facebook page.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES 

Hercules flexing his muscles in first storm of 2014


| editorial@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/File photo

Updated Friday, January 3, 7:05 a.m.

The year is starting out with a shot of nasty weather that is predicted to bring near-blizzard conditions to the city.

Governor Andrew Cuomo declared a statewide state of emergency Thursday afternoon to prepare officials for winter storm Hercules, which is forecasted to bring five to nine inches of snow to the city.

“To ensure an effective and rapid response to this winter storm, I am declaring a statewide state of emergency, so resources can get to communities where they are needed as quickly as possible,” he said.

The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued a winter storm warning until 1 p.m. Friday.

Cuomo also announced the Long Island Expressway will be closed from midnight to 8 a.m. on Friday from the Queens/Nassau County border and east. The Northern State Parkway and all MTA bridges and tunnels will remain open.

“As this winter storm unfolds, bringing heavy snow and high winds to many parts of the state, I strongly urge all New Yorkers to exercise caution, avoid travel and stay indoors,” he said.

Mayor Bill de Blasio emphasized the “forecast could change at any moment.”

“That’s why it’s so important for everyone to pay close attention to updates in the coming hours,” he said at his administration’s first press conference Thursday evening.

Alternate side parking has been suspended Friday to facilitate with snow removal, but payment at parking meters remains in effect.

All express subway service will run local for the start of the morning rush hour, until all stored trains are moved from the express tracks. Riders should expect delays on city buses due to the weather. The Long Island Rail Road is operating on a weekend schedule effective 12:01 a.m. Friday. The Metro-North is running on a reduced schedule after 8  p.m. Thursday, and a Saturday schedule on Friday. To see any additional MTA service changes, click here.

The weather is also affecting air travel. All flights at John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) were suspended as of about 6:12 a.m., but the airport will remain open. Flights could resume in a couple of hours, said the FAA. Thousands of flights have reportedly been canceled across the country Friday, and travelers are urged to check with their carriers before heading to the airport.

City officials have no plan to close specific streets yet, but will monitor that need as the storm progresses, de Blasio said.

The City of New York Department of Sanitation (DSNY) has put 2,300 workers on 12-hour shifts, and 1,700 trucks with snow plows will be deployed once two inches of snow hit the ground. To track the progress of DSNY clearing operations throughout the five boroughs, click here.

Kew Gardens and South Ozone Park had accumulated more than 5 inches of snow as of 4 a.m., according to NWS.

Senior centers throughout the city will be closed through Friday, and de Blasio urged city residents to keep a close eye on the homeless population.

Joe Bruno, the Office of Emergency Management (OEM) commissioner, said the NYPD, FDNY, EMS and other emergency officials will “work around the clock until this is over.”

OEM has issued a hazardous travel advisory for Friday, and is warning motorists to drive slowly, monitor weather and traffic, use major streets or highways, and have the name and number of at least one local towing service.

Temperatures will be blustery, with a high Friday of 17 and low around 8. Wind chill, however, could make the weather feel as cold as 10 below zero, de Blasio said.

Borough residents hit grocery stores and gas stations Thursday afternoon to prepare for the impending storm. People were piling into the Waldbaums on Francis Lewis Boulevard just “picking up extras,” but said “the crazies” would be sure to clear the shelves in the hours to come.

“I’m getting extras just in case,” said Anita Oberwiler, who anticipated frantic shoppers to come rushing through as the afternoon pressed on.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

morning roundup

TODAY’S FORECAST

Thursday: Cloudy. Light snow likely this afternoon. Temps nearly steady around 30. Winds NE at 15 to 25 mph. Chance of snow 40%. Thursday night: Periods of snow. Low 16. Winds NNE at 20 to 30 mph. Chance of snow 90%. 5 to 8 inches of snow expected.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Pop Americano!

From the creators of “Comedy Outliers” comes “Pop Americano!” a fun, interactive show where a panel of comedians breakdown current pop culture and political news. Propelled by it’s use of news clips, sound bites and a quick round of pop culture trivia, “Pop Americano” is a show you can’t miss! 10 p.m. at The Creek and the Cave in Long Island City. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Storm bringing near-blizzard conditions to NYC

The year is starting out with a shot of nasty weather that is predicted to bring near-blizzard conditions to the city. Read more: The Queens Courier

NYPD: Queens shooting is city’s first murder of 2014

A man shot to death in Jamaica Wednesday is the first homicide of the year, police said. Read more: The Queens Courier

De Blasio sworn in as 109th mayor of New York City

New York City’s 109th mayor, Bill de Blasio, was sworn in during a ceremony at his Park Slope, Brooklyn home just after midnight Wednesday, followed by a formal inauguration on the steps of City Hall later that day. Read more: The Queens Courier

Freed ailing ex-terror trial lawyer arrives in NYC

A dying former civil rights lawyer convicted in a terrorism case but released early from prison has arrived in New York City. Read more: AP

Three Rangers named to U.S. Olympic squad

The New York Rangers will be well-represented at the 2014 Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia, at least as far the U.S. Men’s Hockey team is concerned. Read more: ABC New York

 

 

City holds Snow Day at Juniper Park


| editorial@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Mike DiBartolomeo

When there is heavy snowfall the New York City Parks Department sometimes throws a special “Snow Day” in parks across the city with organized activities, such as supervised safe sledding, snowman building contests, best snow angel contests, friendly snowball fights, music and complimentary hot chocolate.

After the blizzard that hit on Friday, February 8, known as Nemo, there was a “Snow Day” at a park in each borough, including Juniper Park in Queens, on Saturday afternoon.

Click here to see photos from the Juniper Park Snow Day.

Update on Nemo cleanup


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Alexa Altman

The  city is swiftly bouncing back after the blizzard dubbed “Nemo” swept through the Northeast last night.

The “Big 4″ lines – Babylon, Huntington, Port Washington and Ronkonkoma – of the LIRR are running on every two hours, the MTA announced. Service on other branches will be restored when rail travel is safe again.

While snow falls dwindled by noon today, the Office of Emergency Management advises that winds can still pick up and cause snow drifts throughout the area.

Snow plows have been clearing and salting streets. To see when the last time your street was plowed, click here.

Queens got comparatively less snow than other parts of Long Island, such as Suffolk County. Governor Andrew Cuomo said he has requested Mayor Michael Bloomberg send any additional snow plows to help ease the two-plus feet of snow in Suffolk. The plows won’t go out until after the city is completely plowed, Cuomo said.

Drivers should stay off the road today, the governor advised, as first responders are still trying to clean up from the storm.

“I’ve been all over the metropolitan area and it is dangerous to be on the roads,” Cuomo said. “This is not the day to be out and about.”

Both LaGuardia and JFK International airports are open, according to the Port Authority. Travelers should check with their airlines to check the status of their flight.

Aerial shot of Queens covered in snow after storm


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo @hglaser1 (Howard Glaser)

This photo was tweeted Saturday morning by Howard Glaser, director of operations for the State of New York and advisor to Governor Andrew Cuomo, and shows an aerial view of Queens after it was blanketed in snow following the February 2013 blizzard.

 

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

PHOTOS: February 2013 Blizzard


| editorial@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Melissa Chan

Check out our photo gallery showing the snowy aftermath of the February 2013 blizzard in Queens.

If you want The Queens Courier to include your blizzard photos in our gallery, let us know by tweeting them to @queenscourier or by posting them on our Facebook page.

 

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

 

NASA photo shows power of winter storm


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of NASA

NASA chose this satellite image of Friday’s blizzard as its photo of the day.

According to NASA, the winter storm is the result of  two low pressure systems merging over the East Coast:

“The satellite image, captured at 9:01 a.m. EST, shows clouds associated with the western frontal system stretching from Canada through the Ohio and Tennessee valleys, into the Gulf of Mexico. The comma-shaped low pressure system located over the Atlantic, east of Virginia, is forecast to merge with the front and create a powerful nor’easter. The National Weather Service expects the merged storm to move northeast and drop between two to three feet of snow in parts of New England.”

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Queens residents pick up last-minute necessities as heaviest snow approaches


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Terence Cullen

As blizzard warnings have everyone getting ready to hunker down, Queens residents, and visitors, are flocking to the stores for any last-minute supplies.

Despite a relatively low volume of shoppers at the Walbaums in Bay Terrace, carts were packed to the gills with any weekend needs including water and non-perishables.

Monica Bell, up from Georgia to visit her children, said she was picking “the normal necessities” along with any other snacks she and her kids may want.

Bell also said she’s focused on getting non-perishable foods “so if the power goes out, I don’t need to refrigerate it.”

Allison Wieczorek, of Bayside, has most of the supplies she needs, but was just heading in to get some last minute needs. Her son had not been feeling well, and she said she was just getting anything incase she can’t make it to the doctor.

Along with these needs, she was also picking up supplies for Valentine’s Day.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Blizzard causes long gas lines, shortages reminiscent of Sandy


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Maggie Hayes

Though Friday’s blizzard won’t be as devastating as Sandy, at several area gas stations there have been long lines reminiscent of the fuel shortage following the superstorm.

On Thursday evening, a line at a gas station in Whitestone off of Clintonville Street stretched around the block, but that wasn’t the only location in the tri-state area with significant waits.

Other local media outlets have been reporting long lines at stations in Long Island, New Jersey and New England also.

In Queens, the gas guzzling is still going on as of this morning. At a 35th Avenue and Bell Boulevard gas stations, the drivers had to wait awhile to fill their tanks, and nearby, a Gulf station on Bell Boulevard and 23rd Avenue had even run out of fuel.

A Mobile station at 172-11 Northern Boulevard was also out of gas, but didn’t think believe the fuel shortage was because of the storm, saying it was more of a logistical thing.”

Other Queens gas stations without fuel as of Friday morning were a Mobile station at 181-08 Northern Boulevard and one at  69-02 Queens Boulevard that is expecting a delivery this afternoon.

On The Courier Facebook page some questioned why people would need to get gas since the storm will prevent drivers from hitting the road, but others worried about another situation similar to Sandy.

“The lines are getting longer all over, said Eleni Lenitsa. “Think we’ll have a shortage again?”

But at a 1 p.m. storm briefing today, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said that there is no need to panic about gas shortages. “The gas supply is plentiful and deliveries won’t be disrupted,” he said.

 

With additional reporting by Maggie Hayes, Anthony O’Reilly and Toni Cimino 

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Storm disrupts local transit, airport travel


| editorial@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of MTA's Flickr

In anticipation of Friday’s blizzard, the MTA has added extra trains to the Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) and Metro-North, and has cancelled weekend subway work. But as the weather conditions deteriorate, the MTA may need to cancel or make changes to service. Check the MTA website for any updates throughout the storm.

LIRR

The LIRR is providing 8 extra for customers heading home early Friday afternoon. The extra service is between 2:09 p.m. and 3:48 p.m., with extra trains on the Babylon, Port Jefferson, Port Washington and Far Rockaway Branches. Additionally, one Port Jefferson train will originate from Jamaica instead of Huntington. Please consult the LIRR service status branch listing for the specific added trains. For more information, click here.

Metro-North

There will be extra trains during the early afternoon to help customers return home. This schedule will result in reduced service during the PM peak. Train combinations and cancellations are possible at any time, but increase in likelihood as the evening progresses to prevent trains from becoming stranded during the storm. For more information, click here

Subways and Buses 

The snow may require NYC Transit to shift the storage locations to subway cars indoors along underground express tracks. Some lines that normally run express will operate on local tracks, others will end service earlier than normal this evening. Bus service will operate on a regular schedule.

Rockaway Ferry

The last departures from Manhattan to Rockaway Friday will be the 5:10pm from East 34th Street and the 5:35pm from Pier 11. The last departure from Rockaway to Manhattan will be the 4:30pm. Find out more at Seastreak.com.

Bridges and Tunnels

The MTA’s nine crossings are open and operating normally at this time. Motorists are asked to allow extra travel time and operate at reduced speeds due to wet roadways. All scheduled lane closures and weekend work at the Queens-Midtown Tunnel has been canceled due to the weather.

Amtrak

At 12:30 p.m. Friday, Amtrak is suspending northbound service out of Penn Station. For more information and updates, click here.

Airports

The storm is also affecting airline travel. As of noon, there were 3,147 Friday cancellations at U.S. airports, according to FlightStats.com, with 722 at LaGuardia and 573 at JFK Airport. JetBlue said that it is canceling all of its flights in and out of area airports.

If are are traveling by air today or over the weekend, make sure to check with your airline before going to the airport.

 

A video of the MTA’s storm preparations. 

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Snow starts in New York as city braces for blizzard


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

queenssnow-540x405

UPDATE 4:30 p.m.:  Governor Andrew Cuomo has declared a state of emergency for New York.

“As this winter storm unfolds, bringing heavy snow and high winds to parts of the state, I strongly urge all New Yorkers to exercise caution, avoid travel, and stay indoors,” said Cuomo. “To ensure an effective and rapid response to this winter storm, I am declaring a state of emergency for counties in the lower Hudson Valley, New York City, and Long Island so resources can get to communities where they are needed as quickly as possible.”

——–

Early Friday morning the snow began falling, but the worst of the weather is still to come.

The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued a blizzard warning from the New York City area that will remain in effect until 1 p.m. Saturday. Ten to 14 inches of snow are expected as well as strong winds at 20 to 30 mph with gusts up to 45 mph.

During the day Friday, the warmer temperatures will bring a mix of rain and snow, but the precipitation will turn to all snow by 3 p.m., with the worst storm conditions forecasted for tonight. The snow should taper off on Saturday morning.

Both the city and local residents are taking the blizzard warning seriously.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg issued a severe weather advisory for the city, and, even though the schools are open today, cancelled all after-school programs and PSAL games have been cancelled.

Yesterday, at a storm press briefing, the mayor also assured residents that the snow plows and salt spreaders are ready to go.

City residents can track the progress of the Department of Sanitation‘s clearing operations for their specific street online.

Alternate side parking is suspended citywide through Sunday, but if your vehicle is found blocking roadways or hindering the ability to plow streets, it may be towed at the owner’s expense.

Though the city’s weather advisory urged the public to use public transportation and avoid unnecessary driving during the duration of the storm.

Because many commuters are likely to head home early today before the heavy snow begins, the Long Island Railroad and Metro-North have added extra trains.

Despite the additional transit and warnings to stay off the road, drivers still made sure to fill up their tanks Thursday. As a result, several area gas stations are experiencing long lines reminiscent of the Sandy gas shortage.

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com


TODAY’S FORECAST

Friday: Overcast with rain, then snow and rain in the afternoon. High of 39 with a windchill as low as 19F. Windy. Winds from the ENE at 15 to 25 mph with gusts to 40 mph. Chance of precipitation 100% with accumulations up to 1 in. possible. Friday night: Overcast with snow. Low of 23F with a windchill as low as 7. Windy. Winds from the North at 25 to 30 mph with gusts to 55 mph. Chance of snow 100% with accumulations up to 11 in. possible.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Survey

In honor of Valentine’s Day, LaGuardia Performing Arts Center will present SURVEY on February 8. SURVEY tells the story of Tom Lawrence, a romantically clueless talk show host whose fiancée leaves him. Baffled, Tom turns to the unlikeliest sources for help-three ex-girlfriends. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Airlines announce widespread flight cancellations ahead of winter storm

Hundreds of flights across the country have already been canceled or delayed ahead of the snowstorm anticipated to pound the Tri-State Area on Friday. Read more: CBS New York

Transit changes due to potential blizzard

The big storm heading for the Northeast is already disrupting rail travel. Read more: ABC New York

Queens man pleads guilty to Federal Reserve bomb plot

The Bangladeshi national said that he wanted to “destroy America.” Quazi Mohammad Rezwanul Ahsan Nafis, 21, pleaded guilty Thursday to attempting to bomb the New York Federal Reserve Bank, resolving to commit mass murder last October, according to the FBI. Read more: Queens Courier

Rockaway residents worry outsiders could take over rebuilding process

There’s no shortage of people interested in helping Rockaway residents figure out how to rebuild their storm-battered neighborhoods. Read more: New York Daily News

150-foot asteroid will buzz Earth, but no need to duck

150-foot-wide asteroid will come remarkably close to Earth next week, even closer than high-flying communication and weather satellites. It will be the nearest known flyby for an object of this size. Read more: AP

NYC area prepares for major snow storm


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

File photo

For the first time this winter, the city is getting ready for a potentially powerful snow storm.

According to the National Weather Service (NWS), the flakes should start falling early Friday morning and the bad weather will continue through Saturday.

Earlier in the day, the NWS  issued a winter storm watch for all of New York City and other parts of the tri-state area, but by the afternoon had changed it to a blizzard warning with 10 to 14 inches of snow expected.

In addition to snow, the storm will bring powerful winds at 20 to 30 mph with gusts up to 45 mph, and a mixture of rain and sleet, particularly on Friday, making for slippery conditions and possible power outages.

There is also a coastal flooding watch for western Long Island Sound and the Twin Forks of Long Island, said the NWS.

At a briefing on the city’s storm preparations this morning Mayor Michael Bloomberg said that the forecasts may be exaggerating the amount of snow, but you never know.

Bracing for the worst case scenario, the city is ready with more than 250,000 tons of salt, 350 salt spreaders and plows for 1,800 sanitation trucks, said the mayor.

City residents can track the progress of the Department of Sanitation‘s clearing operations for their specific street online.

Con Ed also said it is preparing for the storm and any outages it may cause.

To report any outages and downed power lines, or to check service restoration status, customers can visit  www.coned.com/ReportOutage or call -800-75-CONED (1-800-752-6633).

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES