The New York City Emergency Management Department today urged New Yorkers to prepare for potential impacts of Tropical Storm Fay. The National Weather Service has issued a Tropical Storm Warning for New York City in effect from 06:00 a.m. Friday through 0200 a.m. Saturday. A Flash Flood Watch is also in effect for the City from 06:00 a.m. Friday, July 10, 2020, through late Friday night.
With Fay’s track expected to impact NYC, NWS is forecasting moderate to heavy rain to move into the area early Friday morning, continuing throughout the afternoon before tapering off around midnight Saturday. A total of 1 to 2 inches of rain is forecast with this system, with locally higher amounts of 2 to 4 inches possible. Severe thunderstorms cannot be ruled out with this system. High winds are also in the forecast on Friday, with sustained winds 35 mph to 45 mph and gusts up to 50 mph. Winds are expected to taper off overnight Friday into early Saturday morning. There is also the potential for high surf on Friday, with a high risk of dangerous rip currents on Friday and Saturday.
“We are working closely with National Weather Service to monitor Tropical Storm Fay and the potential impacts it may have to New York City,” said NYC Emergency Management Commissioner Deanne Criswell. “This storm is expected to bring strong winds and heavy rain tomorrow, so make sure you secure loose objects like garbage cans and patio furniture, charge cell phone batteries and other devices, and take other necessary precautions.”
The New York City Emergency Management Department is prepared for the effects of Tropical Storm Fay, and will coordinate a virtual Emergency Operations Center (EOC) with City agencies and partners to monitor the forecast and rapidly respond to any potential impacts of the storm. The City’s Flash Flood Emergency Plan is activated to help mitigate potential flash flooding and ensure a quick, effective, and coordinated response to any flash flood events that do occur. Flash flooding can occur with little or no warning due to the large number of paved surfaces across the city. These surfaces do not allow rainwater to be absorbed into the ground and can result in storm drains often being overwhelmed, causing localized flooding. NYC Emergency Management works closely with NYPD, FDNY, Department of Environmental Protection, Department of Sanitation, Department of Transportation, Department of Parks and Recreation, and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority to mitigate the impact of flash floods. New Yorkers are encouraged to report clogged catch basins and areas of standing water to 311 (212-639-9675 for Video Relay Service, or TTY: 212-504-4115). The City’s Downed Tree Task Force has also been notified. This multi-agency task force is responsible for coordinating the response to a large downed tree event.
The Department of Buildings has issued an advisory for property owners, contractors and crane operators to take precautionary measures to secure their construction sites, buildings, and equipment in preparation for strong winds associated with Tropical Storm Fay. The department will perform random spot-check inspections of construction sites around the City and will issue violations and Stop Work Orders, where necessary, if sites are not secured.
- If you live in a flood-prone area, keep materials such as sandbags, plywood, plastic sheeting, and lumber on hand to help protect your home.
- If you have a disability or access or functional need, make sure your plan addresses how your needs may affect your ability to evacuate, shelter in place, or communicate with emergency workers. Arrange help from family, friends, or service providers if you will need assistance.
- When outside, avoid walking and driving through flooded areas. As few as six inches of moving water can knock a person over. Six inches of water will reach the bottom of most passenger cars, causing loss of control and possible stalling. One or two feet of water can carry away a vehicle.
- Stay out of any building if it is surrounded by floodwaters.
- If you see downed electrical wires, do not go near them. Never attempt to move or touch them with any object. Be mindful that tree limbs, leaves, or water can cover downed wires from view. Always stay away from downed power lines because they could be live.
- Report downed wires immediately. If a power line falls on your car while you are in it, stay inside the vehicle and wait for emergency personnel.
- To prepare for a possible power outage, charge cell phone batteries, gather supplies, and turn your refrigerator and freezer to a colder setting. If you lose power, items that need refrigeration will stay cooler for longer.
- Make sure your flashlights and any battery-operated radios or televisions are working. Keep extra batteries.
- If you lose power & have a disability, access and functional needs or use Life Sustaining Equipment (LSE) & need immediate assistance, dial 911.
- Do not use generators indoors.
- Check on friends, relatives, and neighbors, especially older adults and people with disabilities, access and functional needs, or health conditions. Help them to prepare if needed.
Prepare For Strong Winds
Strong winds can bring down trees and power lines and can turn unsecured objects into dangerous projectiles. To protect against the hazard of strong winds, New Yorkers should:
- Check the area immediately surrounding your home for unsecured objects or potentially dangerous conditions. Tree limbs, garbage cans, yard debris, or other materials that can be moved by the wind are potential projectiles aimed at your home or parked vehicle.
- Bring inside loose, lightweight objects such as lawn furniture, potted plants, garbage cans, garden tools and toys.
- Anchor objects that would be unsafe outside, such as gas grills or propane tanks.
- Close up and secure patio furniture.
- Secure retractable awnings.
- Remove aerial antennas and satellite television dishes.
Before and during an emergency, the City will send emergency alerts and updates to New Yorkers through various channels including Notify NYC, the City’s free emergency notification system. Through Notify NYC, New Yorkers can receive phone calls, text messages, and/or emails alerts about traffic and transit disruptions and other emergencies. To sign up for Notify NYC, call 311, visit NYC.gov/NotifyNYC, or follow @NotifyNYC on Twitter.