Tropical Storm Isaias spurs NYC to deploy temporary flood barriers, de Blasio says city 'not taking any chances'
Written by kslmadmin on August 3, 2020
“We are not taking any chances at all,” New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said Monday.
According to the NWS, the potential for one to three feet of storm surge is possible within surge-prone areas with the greatest concern from Tuesday afternoon until Wednesday morning.
In those limited areas, forecasters are advising of “limited impacts,” particularly along immediate shorelines and in low-lying spots.
In his weekly press conference on Monday morning, de Blasio said while the storm’s impact “appears to be limited in terms of New York City,” Lower Manhattan “is particularly vulnerable in this situation” based on forecasts.
He warned that “we have been surprised before by storms. We’ve been surprised by the way they can change at the last minute,” saying that the city is “in a very vigilant state right now.”
“We are not taking any chances at all and for everyone who lived through Hurricane Sandy, you will remember we got a lot more than we bargained for,” the mayor added.
City workers are now installing temporary flood barriers — large interlocking tubes called Tiger Dams — along South Street along the city’s East River, from South Street Seaport all the way down to Wall Street.
“This is crucial. This is going to help protect the community right around there that got hit very hard in Sandy,” de Blasio said, referring to the 2012 superstorm that swamped the area.
The tubes span nearly a mile and were filled with water from a hydrant, according to the New York Post.
The U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC) in Miami said the storm now has maximum sustained winds of 70 mph — just 4 mph shy of officially being a hurricane — and is located about 220 miles south-southwest of Myrtle Beach, S.C. Isaias is moving north at 13 mph.
The latest NHC forecast calls for Isaias to continue its recent strengthening into a hurricane once again before moving into South Carolina by Monday night and then moving quickly north along the Eastern Seaboard through Wednesday.
For Lower Manhattan, the NWS forecasts that winds with 40 to 50 mph with gusts up to 70 mph are possible on Tuesday, with two to four inches of rain that could fall in the city with locally higher amounts.
In the city of Hoboken, N.J. located across the Hudson River from Manhattan and equally as prone to flooding, city officials were prohibiting driving on Tuesday as residents were urged to move their cars from flood hazard areas.
The storm has remained well offshore as it passed Georgia’s coast, but is forecast to make landfall in the Carolinas by late Monday.
Officials in frequently flooded Charleston, S.C., handed out sandbags and opened parking garages so residents in the low-lying peninsula that includes downtown could stow their cars above ground.
Though the center of Isaias was expected to pass Charleston offshore Monday evening, NWS meteorologists said a major flood was possible if rainfall is heavy when the high tide arrives at about 9 p.m.
Those heavy tropical downpours will bring the threat of flash flooding from the Carolinas through the Mid-Atlantic to the Northeast through Tuesday night, as a wide swath of rain with isolated rainfall up to 10 inches, especially across Mid-Atlantic, is expected.
Fox News’ Janice Dean, Brandon Noriega, and the Associated Press contributed to this report.
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