Governor Cuomo declares state of emergency ahead of Hurricane Henri as storm moves towards direct hit in central Long Island


Governor Cuomo also urged outdoor enthusiasts in the Lower Hudson Valley, New York City and Long Island areas to exercise caution this weekend and strongly reconsider visiting the parks. State and Beaches as Hurricane Henri approaches.

The OFPC and state agencies, including the Department of Environmental Conservation, New York State Police, and the Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation are preparing to deploy water rescue teams in the Hudson Valley. New York Task Force-2, an urban search and rescue team capable of water rescue, is also deployed to Long Island prior to Hurricane Henri.

Agency preparations

Department of Transportation

The State Department of Transportation stands ready to respond with more than 3,200 supervisors and operators available statewide. To support storm response activities in critical areas, three signaling bucket trucks, one vacuum truck with sewer jet, four grapple loader attachments and four chippers are deployed to Long Island. 60 out-of-area traffic light crew will also be deployed to Long Island on Saturday.

A total of 125 generators with extended fuel capacities are being deployed in the Mid-Hudson area and Long Island to bolster existing stocks. The need for additional resource deployments will be continuously assessed throughout the event.

Currently, regional teams are engaged in preparations for responding to rain / flood / tree debris, including:

All affected residences will be staffed for 24/7 operations throughout the event. Mechanical support will be available 24/7 to keep response equipment operational. Rapid Flood and Debris Response Teams will be pre-organized in the Long Island and Central Hudson areas overnight Saturday to immediately respond to any needs that arise.

Transit authority

Thruway Authority staff proactively inspect and clean drainage systems and perform general equipment maintenance to respond to potential flooding. Staff are ready to respond to any flooding issue statewide with over 664 operators and supervisors, small and medium excavators, plows / dump trucks, large loaders and a number of panels Portable VMS, portable light towers, small generators, small pumps and transport trailer equipment, as well as signage and other traffic control devices available for any detour or closure.

The Thruway Authority encourages motorists to download its mobile app which is available for free download on iPhone and Android devices. The app gives motorists direct access to live traffic cameras, real-time traffic information and navigation assistance while on the move. Motorists can also sign up for TRANSalert emails which provide the latest traffic conditions along the Thruway, follow @ThruwayTraffic on Twitter, and visit to see an interactive map showing traffic conditions for the Thruway and other New York State roads. .

New York State Police

The State Police’s whitewater teams consist of two hydrofoils and two rigid-hull inflatable boats, as well as two teams of trained soldiers available on 12-hour shifts. The teams are coordinated by the OFPC which will determine the location of the assets.

New York State Police have asked all soldiers to remain vigilant and closely monitor conditions for any issues. Additional staff will be deployed to affected areas as needed. All four-wheel drive and specialty vehicles, including all-terrain utility vehicles, are in service.

Department of Environmental Conservation

DEC environmental conservation police officers, forest rangers, emergency management staff and regional staff are on alert and monitoring developments and actively patrolling areas and infrastructure at risk of damage. be affected by severe weather phenomena. All available resources, including whitewater rescue teams and sawyers, are positioned to assist in any emergency response.

Civil Service Department

New York City Utilities have approximately 5,500 workers available to engage in damage assessment, response, and restoration efforts across the state. Civil Service Ministry staff will follow the work of the public services throughout the storm and ensure that the public services move the appropriate personnel to the regions that are expected to be most affected.

Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation

New York State Park Police and park staff are on alert and closely monitoring weather conditions and impacts. Park visitors should check the parks website here or call their local park office for the latest updates regarding park hours, openings and closings.

New York Power Authority / Canal Corporation

The New York Power Authority and the Canal Corporation have secured and prepared assets and are currently monitoring forecasts and conditions. The Electricity Authority is ready to support electricity restoration activities if necessary.

Metropolitan Transport Authority

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority takes all necessary precautions to protect its transportation system and provide safe service. MTA agencies work closely and coordinate with local partners to develop precautionary plans in the event of an impact on the service. The MTA deploys additional staff and pre-positions essential relief equipment on suburban railways, subways, and agency bridges and tunnels. The Long Island Rail Road proactively tackles things like overgrown trees, utility poles, drainage, and switches that major weather events typically affect to mitigate impacts. In the metro, maintenance personnel will inspect track drains in flood-prone areas, and check and install track pumps and storm cribs before storms. The MTA encourages customers to take extra precautions when traveling during heavy rain and strong winds. This includes allowing for extra travel time, being extra careful when walking on platforms and stairs, watching out for slippery conditions, and watching out for foliage or overhead wires.

Port Authority

The port authority’s emergency management office is monitoring weather conditions throughout today and through Sunday, when heavy rains and winds are expected in the port district. Passengers using Port Authority airports are encouraged to contact carriers and airlines directly in advance for up-to-date information on potential delays and cancellations. Drivers using the agency’s bridges and tunnels are urged to seek up-to-date information on the Port Authority website and through travel alerts in the event of reduced speed limits on bridges due to high winds or potential flooding. For the latest information on Port Authority facilities, please check out social media, sign up for PA Alerts, or download one of the PA mobile apps.

Canal Society

In anticipation of the potential impacts of Tropical Storm Henri, the New York State Canal Corporation will preventively raise its movable dams along the Erie Canal and the Mohawk River between Lock E-8 in Rotterdam and Lock E-15 in Fort Plain. The initial lowering of water levels in this area will begin overnight with the lifting of movable dams starting at 7 a.m. on Sunday, August 22, 2021.

By lifting the movable dams out of the water, water levels in the Erie Canal and Mohawk River will be drastically reduced to near winter levels, which could result in the stranding of any vessel left unattended. Residents and sailors are encouraged to take appropriate action regarding vessels, docks or other seasonal structures in these areas which may be affected or damaged by significantly reduced water levels.

The lifting of mobile dams out of the water is a necessary action to mitigate the risk of flooding in this area.

For mariners looking for a safe harbor, the Waterford flight, Locks E-2 – E-6, will be available to all vessels arriving before 5:00 PM this afternoon.

In addition, the Canal Corporation is taking preventative measures to create additional storage capacity in the Hinckley and Delta reservoirs in anticipation of the precipitation of Tropical Storm Henri. The release of water will not cause any flooding in areas east of the reservoirs. The excess precipitation at the start of the week, which affected the regions of Utica and Rome, had the opportunity to recede.

The Canal Corporation will continue to monitor the storm’s track and inform the public accordingly through additional Navigator Alerts. Members of the public can sign up to receive these notices. here.

Safety tips

If you are traveling in heavy rain, drive carefully and keep these safety tips in mind:

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