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As Hurricane Ian makes its way north after severely battering Florida and the Southeast, New Yorkers can expect frequent rain, low temperatures and high winds, as well as some flood risk throughout the five boroughs and Metro area. 

A thunderstorm makes its way from New Jersey across the Hudson River to lower Manhattan in New York City on August 10, 2021. Photo: Gary Hershorn

According to Sunday’s forecast from NBC4 New York, the city will face some showers, originating from New Jersey, Fairfield County, Connecticut and Long Island from the end of the weekend through Wednesday, with bouts of high wind and a drop in temperature. 

“It’s a broken record forecast for sure,” said Storm Team 4 meteorologist Raphael Miranda. “Spotty showers, temperatures staying below average, and it’s gonna be breezy to Tuesday. One more round of this before conditions really improve in a big way on Wednesday, and the winds between 30 and 45 miles per hour — they will continue right through the day today,” he added. 

Miranda advised New Yorkers near low-lying areas (prone to severe flooding during Hurricane season as shown by 2021’s deadly Ida) that the storm could potentially add to “the coastal flooding problem, the coastal flood threat that we have in effect — advisories and warnings, one to two feet of water above ground possible in those low lying areas. If you have to move the car, you want to do that during several high tide cycles starting today and continuing through tomorrow afternoon, maybe even into Tuesday as well. Watch out in the usual spots that see that coastal flooding tonight turns chilly.” 

Hell’s Kitchen and the West Side’s waterfront face some risk of flooding, according to this coastal risk screening tool from environmental education media organization Climate Central. Portions of Pier 76, 81, 84, 86, 88, 90, 97, 98 and 99 have sections that are 2 feet below sea level, leading to higher risk during heavy rainfall and tropical storms.

Climate Central’s Coastal Risk Screening Tool has mapped the areas along the Hudson River in Hell’s Kitchen that might flood if there is a swell of 2ft of water.

While Ian is unlikely to have the same deadly impact that it did further south or match the damage that of last year’s Ida, future tropical storms and hurricanes will continue to increase in frequency and severity in the face of climate change. “There are a lot of things which are connected, and we’re trying to use models to sort through some of these complicated relationships,” senior scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Thomas Knutson told Wired in an article about the grim future of tropical storms in the US. 

Kutson told the publication that rapidly warming seawater would very likely increase the landfall of Category 4 and 5 storms, adding: “We have very high confidence that sea level rise is going to continue, and that’s going to exacerbate any type of situation like the one we’re seeing now in Florida.” 

And though New York and the East Coast are thankfully nearing the end of hurricane season, the reappearance of the Department of Sanitation’s recognizable orange snow plows on the West Side signal the impending start of…snowstorm season. 

DSNY were out on the streets of Hell’s Kitchen training with their snow plows this weekend. Photo: Phil O’Brien

So stay dry, and on a lighter note, enjoy this PSA from the DSNY…

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