NYC FLOODING | Subways on ‘extremely limited service’ amid heavy rain, MTA reports

NYC flooding impacts Brooklyn subway station as commuters wait
MTA Straphangers wait for the R train at the Union Street subway station in Park Slope, Brooklyn, after torrential downpours flooded most of the New York City subway system on Sept. 29, 2023.
Photo by Gabriele Holtermann

Subways in New York City are running “extremely limited service” amid heavy rainfall and flooding on Friday morning that forced nearly half the system into full or partial suspension, the MTA announced. 

“Service across our network is severely disrupted due to this extreme rainfall. Please stay home if you don’t need to travel,” the agency said in a social media post.

The downpour, which drenched the Big Apple on Friday with more than 4 inches of water, caused the MTA to suspend service along the B, G, and W lines, with the 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, F, L, Q, R and N lines facing partial closures and severe delays. 

Meanwhile, all still-running lines are operating with significant delays. 

Passengers at subway station in Queens amid NYC flooding
Straphangers wait at a rain-soaked Queensboro Plaza station on the 7 line in Long Island City, Queens amid Friday’s heavy rain.Photo by Michael Dorgan

Other trains are impacted by the weather as well, as the MTA also suspended service on the Harlem, New Haven and Hudson Lines of the Metro-North. MTA Chair and CEO Janno Lieber said that’s due to flooding in the South Bronx, and that Metro-North is working on a service plan for the afternoon rush.

On vehicular roads, flooding led to closures of many roads, including the now-restored FDR Drive in Lower Manhattan and the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway in both boroughs, which in-turn has hampered bus service.

The MTA did not announce a timeline to restore regular service, as tracks across the five boroughs have been submerged in rainwater from the downpour. Lieber said crews are working to get the impacted systems back online as quickly as possible, as conditions permit.

“It is not a day to travel if you don’t have to, but if you do, buses are available,” Lieber said. 

The agency is slated to give an in-depth update on the conditions later this evening.

Gov. Kathy Hochul on Friday morning announced a state of emergency to respond the the extreme weather, giving the state government additional authority to respond to the situation.

“I am declaring a State of Emergency across New York City, Long Island, and the Hudson Valley due to the extreme rainfall we’re seeing throughout the region,” the governor said. “Please take steps to stay safe and remember to never attempt to travel on flooded roads.”

Mayor Eric Adams, at a press briefing, added that the dangerous situation may continue well into the day.

“This is a dangerous weather condition and it is not over,” Adams said. “I don’t want those gaps in heavy rain to give the appearance that it is over, it is not.”