Among the killed, a woman and her son when a building partially collapsed in Jamaica. They were later identified as Phamatee Ramskriet, 43, and Khrishah Ramskreit. Neighbors said heavy rains flooded the street in what felt like less than a minute. Cars then drove through the flood, creating waves that crashed into the multi-family home on 1083rd Street, CBS reported.
New York Governor Kathy Hochul declared a state of emergency early Thursday soon after Mayor Bill de Blasio declared one due to what he called “an historic weather event … with record breaking rain across the city, brutal flooding and dangerous conditions on our roads” as remnants of Hurricane Ida raced up the East Coast.
Both toured the damage in Queens on Thursday.
“We’re still uncovering the true depth of the loss, the human loss,” Hochul said. “This is the first time we’ve had a flash flood event of this proportion in the City and in the outlying areas, but we should expect it the next time.”
The governor called for new investments in infrastructure to protect streets and the subway system from future storms, noting improvements made along the coast following Sandy.
“President Biden called, offered any assistance that the State of New York needs. I told him I’ll take him up on that. What happens next, we’ll be doing on the ground assessments with FEMA teams and our local partners,” said Hochul.
Meanwhile, the city’s transit lines were slowly resuming Thursday afternoon. More than a dozen NYC subway lines were partially suspended, with several others experiencing delays, according to the MTA website.