Severe NYC weather causes flooding, power outages in Queens, Staten Island and Brooklyn

A severe thunderstorm rolled across the five boroughs Sunday night, flooding roads, downing power lines and snarling traffic. The thunder began booming around 6 p.m., accompanied by downpours of 2 to 3 inches an hour that swamped low-lying areas of Staten Island and Queens. “The car in front of me stopped, so I stopped, and all of a sudden my car filled with water. It rose so quick it was up to my waist in minutes,” said Stephen Mitchell, 67, of Pennsylvania. He said his $135,000 2014 BMW M6 was totaled in floodwaters on the Long Island Expressway near Utopia Pkwy. late Sunday. Both the LIE and Cross Island Pkwy. were closed in both directions at points due to flooding, authorities said. In Staten Island, firefighters rescued drivers whose cars were stuck in the rapidly rising waters on Amboy Rd. and Ainsworth Ave. in Bay Terrace. Stephen Mitchell's $135,000 2014 BMW M6 was totaled in floodwaters on the Long Island Expressway near Utopia Pkwy. late Sunday. Service on the Staten Island Railway was suspended during the storm, according to the Office of Emergency Management. Parts of the Staten Island Railway were washed out due to the deluge, which also caused airport delays. In Astoria, live power lines came crashing to the ground at 21st St. and 22nd Dr. around 7:30 p.m., authorities said, and outages were reported in parts of Staten Island, Queens and Brooklyn. The National Weather Service issued a flash flood warning for the entire city. Delays of up to four hours were reported at Kennedy, LaGuardia and Newark Liberty airports, according to the Federal Aviation Administration. The storm calmed around 9 p.m. but was expected to pick up again early Monday before subsiding into showers lasting into Tuesday. ON A MOBILE DEVICE? WATCH THE VIDEO HERE. Continue Reading

Jury in Etan Patz murder trial check weather report for day that he vanished in 1979

It's hard to tell which way the wind is blowing with the jury in the Etan Patz murder case. On their fourth day of deliberations Monday, jurors asked to see a document detailing the weather on May 25, 1979, the day the 6-year-old boy disappeared. Accused killer Pedro Hernandez said in his chilling 2012 confession that the weather the day he kidnapped the child was mild — but records show it was cloudy and unseasonably cool. Jurors also asked to rehear testimony from the 54-year-old’s brother-in-law, who first reported him to police. Continue Reading

Weather Underground, a radical left-wing group, accidentally detonates a bomb in Greenwich Village in 1970

(Originally published by the Daily News on March 7, 1970. This story was written by Joseph Modzelewski.) The body of redhaired youth was found beneath the charred ruins of an expensive Greenwich Village townhouse after three violent explosions demolished the building shortly before noon yesterday. Two young women and another person barely escaped death and another person was feared dead in the blast that triggered a six-hour fire at 18 W. 11th St. The body was discovered six hours after the first explosion by firemen who had been forced from the charred building earlier when beams and bricks fell on them. Search of the building was stopped after 6 p.m. because danger to men searching the debris. Con Ed. brought in a crane to knock down the remaining shell at the request of the Fire Department. The search for other possible victims will continue this morning. Fire Chief John O’Hagan said the victim’s body was badly mangled under the rubble of the collapsed four-story structure. The building is owned by a former ad executive, Joseph P. Wilkerson, who is now on vacation on the Caribbean island of St. Kitts. It is believed that his daughter, Kathy, 20, was one of the girls who fled the townhouse. The explosion - believed triggered by a gas leak - also damaged two adjoining brownstone buildings, one the home of Academy Award-nominee Dustin Hoffman and his wife, Ann. New York Daily News coverage of the weather underground bombing in Greenwich Village on March 7, 1970. Mrs. Hoffman had just left second-floor apartment at 16 W. 11th St. and was halfway down the block when the blasts ripped through the townhouse. Normal Seeley, sexton of the Church of Ascension at the corner of Fifth Ave. and 11th St., rushed from his church to the burning building. ‘There was a nude girl standing in the basement window frame, screaming and pointing to others trapped in the explosion,” Seeley Continue Reading

Heavy rain and wind, chilly temps continue to pound NYC, as English tourist even calls nasty weather ‘worse than it is back home’

You know it’s bad when somebody from England complains about the rain in New York City. Gotham got doused for the second straight day by sheets of rain Monday that turned some streets into rivers, forced officials to extend the flash flood watch until Tuesday, and made getting around town a soggy slog. “This is even worse than it is back home in Manchester," said Andrew Doherty, 45, who was referring to his English hometown and wearing a green plastic poncho against the elements. “We're not going let it dampen our spirits though because we’ve come a long way,” said Doherty, in town for a week’s vacation. “But honestly it’s definitely disappointing." Sadly for Doherty, the rain is likely to stick around for much of his stay. “It’s going to continue until tomorrow evening," said meteorologist Faye Barthold of the National Weather Service. "The rain should start to taper off Tuesday afternoon, about three or four o'clock." But cooler than usual temperatures will persist for the next couple days “and there is a chance of more showers toward the end of the week," said Barthold. At some points Monday, between a half-inch and three-quarters of an inch of rain per hour fell on the city, officials said. Manhattan nanny Wendy Romain made the mistake of leaving home without an umbrella. “This is not my day,” said Romain, 35, as she pushed a stroller bearing her young charge Nick to the pool for his swimming lesson. “It could have rained all weekend for all I cared. Just not Monday morning. And the wind just makes it so much worse." Thanks to the weather, 70-year Mohammed Kahayel was one lonely hot dog vendor. All he could do was shiver at his stand near City Hall. “No business today,” said Kahayel, who was dressed on the first day of June in a thick sweather, a hoodie, over which he wore a sports jacket. “A lot of rain Continue Reading

March kicks off with more snow in NYC, but warmer weather is coming

March roared in like a lion — a freezing, shivering lion. Central Park was hit with 4.5 inches of wet snow Sunday, the 69th day of a torturous, frigid winter. The snow began to taper off and turn into freezing rain at around 7p.m. The rain was expected to end about midnight, according to the National Weather Service. “We hope that there will be minimal impact on the morning commute, but again we’re going to be monitoring very, very closely,” Mayor de Blasio told reporters Sunday afternoon. Alternate-side parking regulations are suspended Monday, he said. On Sunday, the snow caused an average of four-hour delays at JFK and LaGuardia airports, according to the Federal Aviation Administration. The Sanitation Department was out in full force, Hizzoner said. There were 500 salt spreaders and 1,500 plows at the ready, de Blasio added. “The plows can only start doing their work when they have at least 2 inches of snow on the ground,” he said. The temperature was expected to remain around 30 degrees Sunday night, the weather service said. “It’s too cold to be out here for very long, but I had to get something warm to drink,” said Jen Burns, 28, who was making a trip to Duane Reade on the Upper East Side before heading home. “Netflix and hot chocolate, that’s the best way to spend a day like this.” On Monday, the mercury is expected to rise to the upper 30s, but winds of up to 20 mph will make it feel much colder. The temperature Monday night is expected to plunge to a bone-chilling 16 degrees. Some light snow may fall on Tuesday, but on Wednesday it will rise into the more March-like mid-40s. This week’s chilly temps come after last month was the coldest February in New York City since 1934, with an average temperature of 23.9 degrees. “I’m ready for spring. I’m tired of being cold Continue Reading

One found dead in burning car outside Oklahoma’s National Weather Center

A car barreled through the gates of Oklahoma's National Weather Center before bursting into flames Thursday, leading to the discovery of one person dead inside, according to local reports. The frightening scene, just south of Oklahoma University's campus in Norman, left fire fighters rushing to put out the flames that were seen completely engulfing a gray sedan around 4:30 p.m. The Norman Fire Department told KFOR that the vehicle rammed the gate connecting to the complex's parking lot. The vehicle then appears to have come to rest in the building's loading dock area, according to photos taken at the scene. The university's police department told the station that they're investigating the incident as a suspected suicide. The school is asking students to avoid the area if possible. Join the Conversation: Continue Reading

Weather cuts Honda Classic short with Padraig Harrington in lead

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. — It’s been a while since Phil Mickelson has closed a deal. It’s been even longer for Padraig Harrington. If the weather ever lets them finish, one 40-something ex-major winner could be claiming a Honda Classic title. The field, with World No. 1 Rory McIlroy having missed the cut, was able to complete only the second round Saturday before a deluge hit PGA National. Wind gusts of up to 55 miles per hour took down the scoreboard in the lake by 18, which was almost lapping at the car on exhibit. With the course totally saturated by three and a half inches of rain and lightning crashes, it wasn’t even possible to bring the players back. They’ll try to repair the course and re-start at 7 a.m. Sunday, but it’s looking like a Monday finish. “I thought we was going to be back out on the golf course with the forecast that I saw on my phone,” Ian Poulter said as he looked out at the soggy scene. “But clearly that was very wrong because there’s three feet of water in places out on the golf course. I’ve never seen rain like it. It’s going to take some serious cleanup to be able to get this course playable for tomorrow morning.” When they do, Harrington will begin to protect a one-shot lead over Patrick Reed that he achieved by finishing off a morning 66 to get to 7-under. Mickelson, his putting woes apparently solved, will attempt to move up from a tie for 10th at 2-under after a 67. Mickelson and Harrington’s last wins were both majors. Mickelson has gone empty since winning the 2013 British Open. Harrington hasn’t won on the PGA Tour or European Tour since he went back to back at the 2008 British Open and PGA Championship. The 43-year-old Irishman has won twice on the Asian Tour since, most recently in December in Indonesia. With all the talk about the young guns, they are the only major winners in the top 10 and they have eight between them. Continue Reading

5 people rescued from rubble after tornado strikes Michigan town, severe weather sweeps through Midwest

PORTLAND, Mich. — Five people were rescued from damaged buildings in a Michigan town and thunderstorms packing strong winds caused damage in Iowa and Illinois as severe weather swept through parts of the Midwest on Monday. A mother and two small children were rescued from a collapsed Goodwill store and two others were helped Monday afternoon from a damaged pharmacy in Portland, 25 miles northwest of Michigan's state capital, Lansing. "We had people trapped in some of the buildings. They have been removed and are fine," Portland Fire Chief John Baker told reporters. He said there may have been some minor injuries to residents but no one had been hospitalized. The National Weather Service confirmed late Monday that Portland had been hit with a tornado rated EF1 with winds of about 100 mph. The storm was part of a string of bad weather that hurtled into Michigan's Lower Peninsula after rushing across the country's Midwest. Other storms were causing damage in Iowa, Illinois and Wisconsin. A wind gust of 95 mph was recorded near small northwest Iowa town Sheldon, destroying a hangar at the local airport. The Times-Herald in Dubuque, Iowa, said high winds Monday lifted the roof off a Menominee, Ill., fire station. Menominee-Dunleith Fire Department Capt. Al Fleege told the newspaper that two of the three vehicles in the building were severely damaged by the collapse. There were no injuries. The Chicago Department of Aviation reported that airlines servicing Chicago's O'Hare and Midway airports canceled more than 500 flights because of weather concerns. In Coal City, a community of about 5,000 people south of Chicago, authorities say high winds have caused heavy damage. Lt. David Doerfler of the Coal City Fire Protection District said late Monday there had been no confirmed reports of injuries. Wind damage was also reported by the National Weather Continue Reading

NYC weather is snowy, cold as ‘winter’s last hurrah’ poised to blanket states from New Mexico to New England, affecting 92 million people

New Yorkers woke up to icy rain that turned to wet snow Thursday as a winter storm stretched from Texas all the way to New England. But for many in the northeast who feel they have spent too much quality time with their snow-blower in recent weeks, there was some hope: some forecasters predicted it could be "winter's last hurrah." New York City was set to get as much as 8 inches of snow Thursday, and governors in Alabama, Mississippi, West Virginia and New Jersey declared states of emergency in advance of the storm. Altogether, about 92 million Americans were under a winter weather advisory on Thursday. The frontal system was expected to cover 2,000 miles of territory between New Mexico and Massachusetts, with temperatures dropping by at least 20 degrees from the previous day. By early Thursday morning, onslaughts of snow were already reported in the region between Jonesboro, Ark., and northwest Tennessee, according to the National Weather Service. The NWS predicted blizzard conditions in that region through 6 a.m., with snowfall and sleet totals expected to reach 12 inches. Kentucky is likely to get 6 to 10 inches of snow. Lexington Mayor Jim Gray tweeted a picture of Weather Channel correspondents in the city Wednesday night and wrote: "You know something's going on when the @weatherchannel is in town! Stay home if you can!" Drivers on Kentucky highways were left stranded for hours when white-out conditions stopped traffic and buried cars. Some travelers tweeted that they had been halted on highways for more than 12 hours. “I've been sick and haven't been eating and now here we are stuck on the road for over 12 hours no food and no water. I'm dying,” one driver posted from inside her car. Boston was poised to break a snowfall record. It was little more than 2 inches shy of eclipsing its all-time snowfall record, and the forecast was for a few inches to fall by storm's end on Thursday Continue Reading

In Norway, weather is cloudy with a chance of earthworms raining down

Forget about cats and dogs — in Norway it's apparently raining worms. Scientists in the Scandinavian nation are scratching their heads after parts of the country were hit by an unexplained earthworm shower, reports The Local. Karsten Erstad claims he was out skiing near Bergen last week when he found thousands of worms scattered across the mountains. The biologist said they were not likely to have burrowed their way through the snow as it was too deep. He suggested the only other logical explanation was that they had somehow fallen down from the sky, reports the BBC. "I saw thousands of earthworms on the surface of the snow. When I put them in my hand I found that they were alive," he told The Local. "In many places, the snow thickness was between half a meter and a meter and I think they would have problems crawling through the cold snow," he added. Erstad's bizarre claim was reported by Norway's national media. It prompted several other people to come forward to say they'd witnessed the same phenomenon in other parts of the country. The so-called "worm rainfall" has also been spotted in Lindås, Suldal and Femunden, on the Swedish border. Erstad said he found newspaper reports citing similar occurrences as far back as 1920. "It's a very rare phenomenon. It's difficult to say how many times it happens, but it has only been reported a very few times," he added. It's still unclear what caused the freak weather condition. But the BBC suggests that high winds could have swept up the critters and carried them for "quite a distance" before dumping them back down to earth. Join the Conversation: Continue Reading