Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today declared a state of emergency in thirteen New York counties as an early-season winter storm brought heavy snow, ice, and rain in parts of the state.
"With serious snowfall and wind sweeping through parts of New York, the state of emergency declaration will help deploy state resources to communities that have been hit the hardest by this storm," Governor Cuomo said. "We are communicating with local governments to coordinate our response efforts and we will mobilize resources as needed to areas experiencing the most severe conditions. I urge New Yorkers to have safety as their top priority and avoid driving on icy roads or during heavy snowfall."
A state of emergency enables New York to use state resources to assist local governments more effectively and quickly, and gives the Governor the authority to suspend statutes, rules and regulations that would impede response and recovery activities. The declaration further gives the Governor the ability to direct state resources, such as Department of Transportation equipment and personnel, to local governments in need. The declaration applies to Albany, Columbia, Dutchess, Delaware, Greene, Orange, Putnam, Richmond, Rensselaer, Rockland, Sullivan, Ulster, and Westchester counties, and contiguous areas.
New Yorkers in affected regions should prepare for the possibility of extended power outages due to the combination of wet snow and leaves on trees causing branches to fall on power lines. The State Public Service Commission (PSC) is working to ensure utilities respond aggressively to get power back on as soon as possible should outages occur. PSC has worked with multiple utility companies, who have identified and made available 341 line, tree, and forestry crews and contractors.
Steps taken to ensure readiness include:
- Snow and ice assets are being deployed: 825 plow trucks are ready for snow and ice control, 90 loaders in support, with 990 operators and supervisors engaged in operations.
- There are currently 162 New York State Troopers assigned to the affected areas. Additional members are being recalled to deploy to the affected regions.
- The State Police has aircraft on standby for life-safety missions.
Current Road Closures: (Subject to sudden change with weather conditions):
- NYS Route 42 at Kiamesha Lake near Monticello
- Eastbound Right Lane Blocked on Brooklyn Queens Expressway at Cadman Plaza due to flooding
- Southbound Lanes of Bronx River Parkway at Gun Hill Road due to downed tree
- Taconic State Parkway Northbound and Southbound from I-84 to Route I-84 Eastbound from Route 9 to Route 312 (exits 13-19).
The New York State Thruway Authority reported the following conditions:
- NYC to Catskill - heavy and accumulating snow, wet/icy
- Catskill to Amsterdam - snow, wet/icy
- Amsterdam to Pennsylvania state line - generally clear
- Speed restriction on Tappan Zee Bridge to 35 mph
- Speed restriction from NYC to Herkimer to 45 mph for all commercial vehicles
Long Island Rail Road:
- Full service with no weather related issues.
New York City Subways
- No service on the #2 line between East 180th Street and Dyre Avenue due to several trees down on tracks Y1 and Y2 between Pelham Parkway and Dyre Avenue.
Staten Island Railway:
- Trains operating in both directions.
- Various detours in effect due to downed trees and tree limbs, power lines.
MTA Bridges and Tunnels:
- All facilities are currently open and operating in both directions.
- Branch lines on New Haven are out, and New Haven Trains are running hourly.
- The Upper Harlem line is out.
- There are currently 50 mile speed restrictions system-wide.