On Friday, September 29th in New York City, the city underwent preventable flooding.
I have lived in New York City for nearly a decade. I have lived in Woodside, Queens; St. George, Staten Island; Bed Stuy, Brooklyn; the Lower East Side of Manhattan; and most recently, Prospect Park, Brooklyn.
I have lived all over. And I have NEVER seen a failure of New York City public service like I had seen on Friday, September 29th. The rain wasn’t even that bad on Friday, September 29th. When it rains for long periods, 24 hours or more, NYC workers are called in ahead of time to monitor drain grates in New York City to make sure that they don’t get clogged and cause flash flooding. As long as the drain grates don’t get clogged, it is nearly impossible for the streets to flood. Some train stations will always flood. Some train stations are underground pools that will fill with water with rain. But when the train stations flood, as long as the street grate drains are cleared, then the streets don’t flood, and the city calls in off-service bus drivers to drive buses from each train stop, thereby giving train service via bus.
Essentially when rain happens, the city brings in off-duty city waste management workers to monitor the grate drains. And the city brings in off-duty bus drivers to run the train routes by bus instead of train.
The city workers love this deal as they get paid overtime and “hazard” pay. These city workers make a week or more worth of pay in a short period in these circumstances, as they should. As they as being called in to do extra/hazardous work.
On Friday, September 29th, New York City decided to not go with the common plan B as noted above. As I noted, the rain in the city was not that bad. But the city allowed a catastrophe to happen by not employing the tactics above to solve the problem at the moment.
As a result, cars ended up underwater. Water rushed into buildings. The insurance claims from Friday, September 29th will be insurmountable. But I firmly believe that New York City is out of money and that they wanted to see what that bill from the insurance company looked like. They want the insurance companies to sue the city for neglect. So that the city can sue the state for lack of help. So that the state can sue the federal government for lack of help. It’s a buck being passed sue game.
I went up to garbage workers in the City on Saturday, Sept 30th to ask them why crews weren’t deployed to unlock drains. And why buses weren’t sent in after, to run the train routes on clear roads. And these workers just shrugged and said. “New mayor”.
And I went up to a group of cops and asked them the same, and they said, “We know”. And I told these cops, “Hey, once city public works workers and bus drivers aren’t getting the overtime they depend on to pay their mortgages in rainy situations like on Friday, how long ’til they riot.” And the cops sheepishly smiled, and said, “Yeah, we know.”