August 14, 2018
Albany, NY

Governor Cuomo Issues State of Emergency For Portions of the Finger Lakes, Southern Tier and Central New York

TOP Governor Cuomo Issues State of Emergency For...

New York National Guard Deploying 50 Service Members and 10 Vehicles to Support Flood Response Efforts

 

Sandbags and Pumps Are en Route to Seneca County, and Swift Water Teams Mobilizing to Assist with Flooding Issues

 

Governor Tours Seneca and Broome Counties, Activates Additional Agencies to the State Emergency Operations Center in Albany to Coordinate and Deploy Emergency Resources

 

Flash Flooding Likely, Especially in the Finger Lakes, Southern Tier, Mohawk Valley, Capital Region, Mid-Hudson Valley and New York City

 

The Governor's State of Emergency Declaration is Available Here

 

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today declared a State of Emergency for Broome, Chemung, Chenango, Cortland, Delaware, Monroe, Onondaga, Ontario, Schulyer, Seneca, Steuben, Tioga, Wayne, Yates, and contiguous counties through August 21. The Governor made the announcement after surveying flooded areas and damaged property in Seneca and Broome counties. The storms, which are continuing to make their way slowly from west to east across the state, may cause additional flash flooding and New Yorkers are urged to prepare for potential extreme and unpredictable weather.

 

At the Governor's direction, the State Emergency Operations Center has been elevated to a Level 3 and additional agencies have been deployed to assist with logistics, transportation and technical rescue, and to coordinate any response efforts in impacted counties. Regional emergency response teams are activated and are in close contact with community leaders and emergency responders. State agencies are mobilizing resources and personnel for flash flooding issues from heavy downpours in areas across the state that that have experienced an abundance of recent rainstorms. 

  

"I want to make this point as serious as a heart attack: floods are nothing to play with," Governor Cuomo said. "As flash flooding continues to threaten communities across the state, I have declared a State of Emergency for counties in Central New York, the Finger Lakes and the Southern Tier. I commend all of our brave first responders who are assisting communities impacted by this extreme weather. It's times like these, when things are at their worst, that New Yorkers are at their best."

Audio Photos

Showers and thunderstorms with locally heavy rain will continue this afternoon across parts of the Finger Lakes, Central New York, Southern Tier, Mohawk Valley, Capital Region south of Albany, Mid-Hudson Valley and New York City. Rainfall in excess of 1 inch per hour is possible and could cause hazardous driving conditions from ponding on roadways. Flash flood watches and warnings have been issued for many areas of the state.

 

A storm system will continue throughout the day moving west to east bringing with it heavy downpours. This rain combined with the already wet conditions may cause flash flooding of small streams and in areas that have already had recent heavy rain storms. Ponding of water on roads is also expected at times. Flash Flood Watches and Warnings have been issued in several areas of the state. For a detailed list of weather watches and warnings visit the National Weather Service website.

 

Senator Pam Helming said, "Working with Governor Cuomo, we have mobilized all available State resources to assist those impacted by recent flooding. The brave efforts of local volunteer firefighters and first responders have undoubtedly saved lives. As State Senator, I will continue to work closely with Governor Cuomo, local officials, and first responders to get the help we need to protect lives and property. I appreciate Governor Cuomo's focus and immediate response to this dangerous situation. Please continue to keep all affected by this tragedy in your thoughts and prayers." 

 

I commend all of our brave first responders who are assisting communities impacted by this extreme weather. It's times like these, when things are at their worst, that New Yorkers are at their best.

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

 

State Agency Actions

 

Governor Cuomo has directed the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services' Office of Emergency Management and Office of Fire Prevention and Control, the Department of Environmental Conservation, New York State Police, New York State Parks, and other state agencies to prepare staff, assets and stockpiles to support response efforts that may arise during the current flood watches and warnings across the state.  

 

At the Governors direction, the New York State Emergency Operations Center in Albany has been elevated to a Level 3 with additional personnel to assist with logistics, transportation and technical rescue. DHSES Commissioner Parrino has been deployed to Seneca County to provide support to local officials and to coordinate response efforts. Office of Emergency Management has been in constant communication with county emergency management officials and has conducted conference calls with the National Weather Service, state agency partners and counties that could be impacted by the severe weather. The state's 10 regional stockpiles are prepared with 18 sandbagging machines, over 1.8 million sandbags, over 700 generators, over 1,200 pumps and various hoses, 181 light towers, 960 traffic barriers, 594 traffic barrels, over 6,700 feet of aquadam temporary damming system, over 51,000 ready to eat meals and over 425,000 bottles and cans of water. The Division's swift water rescue team: New York Task Force-2, Urban Search and Rescue Team, boats, and high axle vehicles are deployed to the region to assist with response efforts.

 

The New York National Guard is deploying 50 service members and 10 vehicles to support local authorities in flood response efforts. Of the 50 service members, 25 soldiers from the 204th Engineer Battalion with five vehicles will stage at their armory in Binghamton and will stand by for further requests for support. In addition, 25 Airmen from the 174th Attack Wing in Syracuse will deploy forward to Ovid, Seneca County later this afternoon with five vehicles to support local response efforts there. The New York National Guard will provide an additional 150 personnel and 30 vehicles on Wednesday morning including:

  • 50 additional soldiers with 10 vehicles at Binghamton
  • 25 soldiers with five vehicles at Horseheads
  • 25 soldiers with five vehicles at Walton
  • 50 soldiers with 10 vehicles at Auburn

 

The New York State Department of Transportation is actively preparing for high water by readying equipment and staff who will conduct flood watches, monitor bridges as water rises, and respond as needed. DOT crews have been actively working to clear culverts and drainage basins to help ensure they flow freely. DOT is actively preparing for high water by readying equipment and staff who will conduct flood watches, monitor bridges as water rises, and respond as needed. DOT crews have been actively working to clear culverts and drainage basins to help ensure they flow freely. DOT has 3,519 operators and supervisors statewide and is ready to respond with 1,530 large dump trucks, 329 loaders, 85 excavators, 20 graders, 15 bucket trucks, 19 vacuum trucks with sewer jets, 6 trailer mounted sewer jets, 14 water tankers, 11 water pumps, and 4 bulldozers.  

 

New York State Thruway Authority staff are actively inspecting drainage systems and removing debris along the roadway. Additional staff are monitoring for potential flooding and are ready to assist with the deployment of equipment and resources if any flooding issues develop.  

 

State Police have deployed 30 troopers, including divers, to the command post in Seneca County, as well as three boats, two four-wheel drive Utility Task Vehicles, and an incident command vehicle. All equipment in other affected regions is staged and ready for deployment, including boats and 4x4 vehicles, and troopers remain on high alert. 

 

The Department of Environmental Conservation is deploying its staged flood control assets to impacted communities. Currently, 11 Environmental Conservation Police Officers (ECOs), two boats, two ATVs, and one UTV have been deployed in the Southern Tier Region. In Schuyler County, DEC is closely monitoring flooding of the Montour Falls Water Resources Recovery Facility and ATVs/UTV are conducting searches of evacuated towns and villages. In Chenango County, DEC Spill Responders are responding to a reported spill in the town of Greene after a car was washed into an aqueduct.

 

 

 

In addition, DEC Forest Ranger hoist operators, swift water rescue teams, and two air boats have been deployed to Southern Tier counties to assist with ongoing rescue operations. In Seneca County, DEC Division of Law Enforcement boats are patrolling Seneca Lake near the village of Lodi. DEC is also dispatching two drone operators to the Southern Tier to assist with recovery efforts.

 

DEC continues to monitor wastewater treatment plants in the area and inspect dams and flood control projects to ensure operational readiness. DEC Regional Directors are in close communication with municipal officials monitoring flood gauges, and DEC's Division of Water 'flood hub' is actively monitoring the area. In addition, ECOs are on alert ready to deploy, and DEC Forest Rangers have additional two swiftwater teams with airboats and whitewater rafts, and motorized boats for flat, open water, ready for deployment.

 

In preparation for severe weather and flooding, New York State Parks continues to actively monitor the situation and has directed the Park Police and park personnel to take appropriate action to prepare for possible flooding at State Park facilities including clearing culverts and drainage areas and preparing equipment that may be necessary to respond to flood-related issues.

 

Stay Informed

At the Governor's direction New York State has recently improved the NY-Alert emergency alerting system.  NY-Alert warns citizens of critical information and emergencies and provides timely information to protect lives. Warnings and emergency information can be directed to a phone call, email, text message or fax. Visit alert.ny.gov for more information.

 

For more safety tips for all types of weather events, visit the DHSES website at www.dhses.ny.gov/oem/safety-info/index.cfm.

Contact the Governor's Press Office
Contact the Governor's Press Office
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