People are getting pretty geared up about this once-again-Category-4-storm otherwise known as Earl headed hell-and-high-water for the East Coast. There are hurricane warnings in North Carolina and tropical storm warnings in Virgina, Maryland, and New Jersey, while tropical storm watches are in effect for New York City beaches, Connecticut, and all the way to Massachusetts.
Even though Earl’s not supposed to get closer to NYC than 200 miles east-southeast of Far Rockaway sometime late Friday, this afternoon the National Weather Service estimated that city-dwellers have a 40% chance of seeing storm-level winds. The Buildings Department has wisely warned buildings and contractors to tie down anything that might blow away or otherwise wreak havoc if flung about.
The MTA is preparing for service-related issues by warning us that there may be service-related issues in the case of flooding underground and on streets. Did you know that New York City Transit has three pump trains capable of pumping 300 gallons of water from the system every minute, as well as “a fleet of portable pumps, some with a pumping capacity of 600 gallons per minute”? Well, now you do. Also good to know: when storm winds reach a sustained 39 mph, railroad service will be suspended. Which could happen before the worst part of the storm.
Meanwhile, if you’re a crazy person, or just a surfer, you are hella psyched about the monster waveage on the horizon.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on September 1, 2010