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SEE IT: New York City washed out by the wrath of Hurricane Ida’s remnants

Cars navigate a flooded highway, as local media reported the remnants of Tropical Storm Ida bringing drenching rain and the threat of flash floods and tornadoes to parts of the northern mid-Atlantic, in the Queens borough of New York City, U.S., September 2, 2021. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

New Yorkers have begun cleaning up from possibly the worst rainstorm it’s ever seen.

More than seven inches of rain fell (and fell hard) across parts of the Five Boroughs between Wednesday night and Thursday morning, sparking the first flash flood emergency in the city’s history, all thanks to the remnants of Hurricane Ida.

Roads turned into raging rivers and the subways became submerged in rainwater — the city’s sewer system incapable of handling so much rain in such a short span of time. Late Wednesday night, the entire subway system wound up being suspended, but much of it was stirring back to life (with delays) as the morning rush hour kicked in Thursday.

The flooding proved deadly; at least 12 people drowned in such conditions across Brooklyn and Queens, according to police. Many of the victims were found in basements which had become quickly overrun with water.

More than 20,000 customers scattered across the Five Boroughs and Westchester County were without power as of 9 a.m. Sept. 2, according to Con Edison. Among the hardest hit areas by the outages were Morris Park and Throggs Neck in The Bronx, and Castleton Corners and Port Richmond on Staten Island. The utility company says it is working as quickly as possible to restore power to the affected customers.

Mayor Bill de Blasio and Governor Kathy Hochul have declared states of emergency across the region. Hochul further asked President Joe Biden for a disaster declaration, and it’s expected the commander-in-chief will approve it before long — opening the door for federal resources to assist the state and city in the cleanup and recovery efforts.

Citing experts, Hochul noted that what New Yorkers experienced on Sept. 1-2, 2021 was a once-in-a-500-year event. But over the last decade, New Yorkers can recall many other previously-unprecedented severe weather events that caused all kinds of damage and disruption — from a macroburst and tornadoes that ripped through Brooklyn and Queens in September 2010; to Tropical Storm Irene in August 2011; to the biggest of them all, Hurricane Sandy, whose deadly storm surge inundated most of the New York City coast in October 2012.

During Wednesday’s storm, many New Yorkers took to Twitter to compare the scene of torrential rains to that of an apocalyptic movie. But it would seem to most people that while life isn’t exactly imitating art, the realities of climate change are looming larger than ever in the Five Boroughs.

Stay with amNY.com all day Thursday for the latest news on the storm’s impacts and cleanup effort.

Flooding in the parking lot of Maimonides Park on Thursday, Sept. 2, 2021, a day after the remnants of Hurricane Ida bashed the city with heavy rainfall.Photo by Paul Frangipane
A large puddle blocks an entrance to Calvert Vaux Park on Thursday, Sept. 2, 2021, a day after the remnants of Hurricane Ida bashed the city with heavy rainfall.Photo by Paul Frangipane
Flooding on nearly all major roadways left flooding at unseen levels throughout the Bronx and surrounding hours. Drivers either abandoned tier cars or were left stranded for hours into Thursday afternoon.Photo by Christian Falcone
A large puddle blocks a piece of the Shore Road Promenade in Bay Ridge on Thursday, Sept. 2, 2021, a day after the remnants of Hurricane Ida bashed the city with heavy rainfall.Photo by Paul Frangipane
NYC Parks Department employee John Crespo shovels mud blocking a walkway in Owl’s Head Park in Bay Ridge on Thursday, Sept. 2, 2021, a day after the remnants of Hurricane Ida bashed the city with heavy rainfall.Photo by Paul Frangipane
Millennium Skatepark in Owl’s Head Park completely flooded with water on Thursday, Sept. 2, 2021, a day after the remnants of Hurricane Ida bashed the city with heavy rainfall.Photo by Paul Frangipane
A woman waits by the entrance of Rector Street subway station in the Financial District, Sept. 2, 2021. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
Cars are left abandoned following overnight flooding on the FDR Drive, Sept. 2, 2021. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
More views of the abandoned vehicles on the FDR Drive, Sept. 2, 2021. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
 REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
NYPD officers carry a disabled man out of a basement flooded due to heavy rain brought by the remnants of Hurricane Ida in New York, Sept. 2, 2021. NYPD/Handout via REUTERS.
A bus navigates past abandoned cars on a flooded Grand Central Parkway service road in Queens, Sept. 2, 2021. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
NYPD vehicles block the entrance to the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway due to flooding in Brooklyn on Sept. 2, 2021. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
A commuter waits for a train as the service is delayed after heavy rainfall in Manhattan, Sept. 2, 2021. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
Vehicles try to navigate the flooded Grand Central Parkway service road in Queens, Sept. 2, 2021. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
New York City Police vehicles block the entrance to the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway in Queens, Sept. 2, 2021. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
Commuters are forced to brave the elements during the early hours of the morning after train service is suspended.Photo by Dean Moses
The 28th Street and 7th Avenue subway station was blocked off by NYPD due to flooding.Photo by Dean Moses
With trains coming to a halt due to flooding, commuters are stranded.Photo by Dean Moses
A vehicle moves along a flooded road as safety barriers float in floodwaters in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, Sept. 1, 2021, in this still image taken from video obtained from social media. JAYMEE SIRE/via REUTERS.

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