Storm At Citi Field

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Dangerous Storms Strike Tri-State Area; Metro-North Service Halted During Rush

May 15, 2018 - 6:58 pm

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) -- A line of intense thunderstorms packing heavy rain, hail and strong wind gusts wreaked havoc on the Tri-State area Tuesday, disrupting the evening rush hour commute, knocking out power to thousands, downing trees and sending construction materials flying off buildings.

The sky over the city turned black as the storm, which prompted tornado watches and warnings in Conecticut and upstate counties, rolled in.

Hail the size of baseballs were reported near Saugerties, New York.

Weather Forecast

Downed trees forced the Metro-North Railroad to suspecnd service on its Harlem, Hudson and New Haven lines. By 6:25 p.m., Hudson Line service resumed between Grand Central Terminal and Croton-Harmon with delays of up to an hour. But service between Croton-Harmon and Poughkeepsie remained suspended due to the of multiple downed trees. New Haven Line service also resumed around 6:30 p.m., also with delays of up to 60 mins. Harlem Line service was the last to resume around 7:45 p.m.

Metro-North Updates

Customers were packed shoulder-to-shoulder at Grand Central Terminal, WCBS 880's Tom Kaminski reported.

Some commuters were not pleased in the slightest.

“It’s shameful,” said Tom Wilson of Rye. “It’s absolutely shameful.”

As WCBS 880’s Ethan Harp reported, Wilson was furious after Metro-North seemed paralyzed. He said the Metropolitan Transportation Authority did not offer enough information as he stood in a sea of people at the man hall at Grand Central Terminal.

“They obviously have a plan of some type but they’re not sharing it with us,” Wilson said.

For thousands, it was an evening of being stranded together, dodging the storm while searching for a way home.

“Here, nothing is working,” said one woman named Arielle. “It’s just waiting, waiting, waiting.”

On the Robert F. Kennedy Triborough Bridge, visibility was low and the lights in Manhattan could barely be seen with the low cloud cover, WCBS 880’s Peter Haskell reported.

In East Elmhurst, Queens, a food cart jumped about a foot – and dust, dirt, debris and garbage – flew through the air as the storm blew in.

Trees were coming down in the strong wind gusts. One Twitter user even reported that the wind brought down the top of a rooftop water tank.

On Bedford Avenue in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, a metal construction frame fell from a roof in the wind.

Lightning struck cars and starting fires in parts of New Jersey as the storm pounded the area, WCBS Chief Meteorologist Craig Allen reported.

WCBS 880 Traffic reported Route 46 eastbound was shut down in Clifton before Van Houten Avenue, where poles and wires came down and started an electrical fire.

The storm also left hundreds of thousands of customers in the area without power.

The storms should wrap up by 11 p.m. and cool things off. The high for Wednesday is only forecast at 65 degrees, and rain is expected, but in the form of showers rather than storms.