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MTA Issues Agency-Wide Preparations Ahead of Expected Heavy Rainfall

Updated September 1, 2021 1:00 p.m.

Crews Will be in Place to Monitor Flood-Prone Locations  

Monitor new.mta.info, MYmta App, MTA Agencies on Twitter for Latest Service Information  

Flash Flood Watch Is in Effect for New York City until 2 p.m. on Thursday  


The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) today issued an update on preparations for heavy rainfall expected throughout the region. There is a flash flood watch in effect for New York City through 2 p.m. on Thursday, September 2. The MTA is taking all necessary precautions to protect its transportation network and deliver safe service. 

“The safety of our employees and customers is our number one priority and we have a detailed plan in place to make sure trains continue to run and riders can get where they need to go,” said Demetrius Crichlow, Senior Vice President of Subways for MTA New York City Transit. “We are closely following the expected rainfall and crews are ready for whatever this storm may bring.” 

The Rail Control Center and Bus Control Center are closely monitoring the storm’s progress. Crews are doing the following in preparation: 


  • Stage crews to monitor and respond to flood-prone locations.  
  • Prepare crews on debris trains for supporting clean-up activities.  
  • Inspect 10 track pump locations.  
  • Inspect 30 drains at flood prone locations and ensure they are ready to accept water and not create any unsafe conditions.  
  • Inspect 34 direct sewer connections.  
  • Cover street vents at six key locations.  
  • Prepare, fuel and test equipment for debris clearance, if necessary.  
  • Inspect and stage emergency trucks, pumping equipment, and emergency response equipment.  
  • Continue to monitor weather reports and assess any implications of storm conditions on high tides or storm surge.   

A Local Storm Desk will be activated if conditions warrant. All maintenance departments will be staffed sufficiently. Crews will perform frequent signal switch tests to ensure all signals are functioning as intended and activate weather-related precautions as needed. Non-essential repair, maintenance and construction work is being evaluated for possible suspensions if the weather warrants. 


  • Road division will provide additional support to any know flash flood areas and bus depots throughout the city.  
  • Buses command center will be staffed to switched into emergency mode as needed quickly.  
  • All bus depots will have security checks throughout the storm.  
  • Buses will have additional staffing for any emergencies that may arise.  
  • All emergency generators will be ready in event of any power outage for continuous bus service & support. 

Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North Railroad  

  • Operations centers will have additional staffing to monitor weather and system conditions.  
  • Strategic deployment of maintenance personnel including track, signal and power staff.  
  • Have public information officers and public address announcers on duty to keep customers informed with up-to-the-minute service information.  
  • Mobile units and diesel mobile units will be placed in strategic locations to protect the operation and staffed around the clock. 

Bridges and Tunnels   

  • All facilities are fully prepared and staffed for any weather-related incidents.  
  • Electronic weather sensors are functional, and all facilities can monitor weather and roadway conditions.  
  • Areas that have proven to be historically prone to flash flooding have been checked and crews will monitor these areas and respond to conditions throughout.  
  • Authority-wide equipment and supplies – including facility generators, fuel, anemometers – have been checked and are at adequate levels for response and deployment as needed.  
  • All motorists should avoid unnecessary travel during the storm. 
  • Monitor weather forecasts and current conditions to make all necessary adjustments to the emergency response deployment. 

Construction and Development  

Project staff continue to work with operating agencies to coordinate preparations and secure project sites.  

Inspectors and project staff continue to tour project sites and ensure drainage is working, generators and pumps have been tested, and that elevators under construction are raised. 

For real-time service updates and information, customers may use the following options:   

  • Check new.mta.info or the MYmta app for updates, including modified emergency schedules.  
  • Follow @MTA and the MTA’s operating agencies on Twitter. 
  • Sign up for text message or email alerts at mymtaalerts.com.