Monday, January 25, 2016

NYC blizzard: Travel ban lifted after 2nd snowiest storm hits NYC

A weekend winter storm set an all-time daily snowfall record for New York City, the National Weather Service said.

Central Park saw 26.6 inches of snowfall on Saturday, breaking the previous one-day record of 24.1 inches on Feb. 12, 2006, the National Weather Service said on Twitter.

The storm, which began Friday night, brought a total of 26.8 inches of snow to Central Park before it ended Saturday night, making it the second largest snowfall accumulation since New York City first began keeping records in 1869. The city's snowiest storm was back in 2006, when New York saw 26.9 inches of snow.

The storm also brought whiteout conditions and winds gusting up to 55 mph, the National Weather Service said. The brunt of the storm hit Saturday during the day, but it tapered off Saturday night at about 10 p.m. A blizzard warning was lifted Sunday morning.

Three people died of apparent heart attacks while shoveling snow in New York City on Saturday, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said at a news conference Sunday morning.

Cuomo lifted his travel ban on New York City roads at 7 a.m. Sunday, and traffic "resumed without issue," he said. But he asked New Yorkers to stay off the roads unless necessary, explaining that cars are still getting stuck and that drivers may face black ice.

The lift of the travel ban "does not mean that people should take a ride to see the sights," he said.

The NYPD issued 25 summonses for driving during the travel ban. One man was arrested for running red lights and driving drunk, the NYPD said.

Crews continued to work to clear roads on Sunday. Mayor Bill de Blasio's office said that 2,300 pieces of snow-cleaning equipment are cleaning up the streets, and sanitation workers are on 12-hour shifts.

De Blasio said at a news conference Sunday that a number of Queens neighborhoods needed additional snow plowing. Snow-clearing efforts were being focused on Woodside, Sunnyside, Ridgewood, East Elmhurst, Jackson Heights and Corona.

The city suspended bus service and exterior subway lines during the storm, but most service was restored by midday Sunday. Alternate side parking rules are suspended until Monday, Feb. 1.

Cuomo praised sanitation crews, cleanup crews, police, the MTA and Port Authority for "amazing work across the board." He also said it was heartwarming to see New Yorkers rallying for each other, shoveling each other's walkways and pushing stuck cars.

“It was just great to see how New Yorkers come together in a beautiful spirit of community," he said.

(With Newsday)
Source: Mayor's office

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