The storm that has ravaged the northeastern United States has killed at least 44 people in the states of New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania.
The foothills of Hurricane Ida, which made landfall in the southern state of Louisiana earlier in the week, resulted in exceptionally heavy rainfall, tornadoes and numerous floods and mudslides. State of emergency has been declared in New Jersey and New York.
23 people have been killed in New Jersey, Governor Phil Murphey said on Twitter on Thursday. “It mainly concerned people who drowned in their vehicles due to flooding; we mourn with the relatives.”
In New York City, police said 13 people were killed as a result of the tropical storm, while three people died in nearby Westchester. According to news channel NBC, 11 of the people in New York died because they were trapped in the basement of their house. Four people died in a suburb of Philadelphia; in Connecticut, a police officer died when the water dragged his car.
US President Joe Biden on Thursday declared a state of emergency in both New York and New Jersey to provide more support to rescuers from the federal government. Biden praised New York’s “heroic” fire department for rescuing people from flooded subway stations.
Record amounts of precipitation were measured in the centre of New York City. Mayor Bill de Blasio called the storm and the numerous floods in the city “historic”. Metro connections have also been flooded, and trains and flights have been cancelled due to the flooding.
New York State Governor Kathy Hochul called for infrastructure improvements, which she says the state is already investing in. She called on insurers to deal with claims expeditiously.