Tropical Storm Isaias blew into Long Island with strong winds Tuesday that left more than 400,000 homes and businesses without power, blocked roads with downed trees, and prompted the Long Island Rail Road to suspend service.
PSEG-Long Island reported about a third of its 1.1 million customers in Nassau and Suffolk counties lost power during the storm and widespread communications issues that frustrated outage reporting. Officials reported downed trees blocking hundreds of roads ranging from small side streets to major routes such as the Southern State Parkway. The LIRR partially resumed service Wednesday.
National Weather Service reported the highest gust in the New York Metro area was 78 mph at Republic Airport in East Farmingdale. A tornado warning was briefly issued for the East End, but no there were no immediate reports of a twister touching down on LI. Social media images showed tornadoes in Cape May, Marmora and Long Beach Island along New Jersey’s southern shore, and tornado damage in Dover, Delaware.
The fast-moving storm came as tides were higher than normal because of a full moon Monday night. But LI dodged a direct hit. The heaviest rains were west of LI.
Tropical Storm Isaias killed at least four people as it made its way up the U.S. Atlantic Coast, including two deaths at a North Carolina trailer park that was struck by a tornado spun off by hurricane-force winds. A man in Queens became the fourth fatality when a tree crushed a car he was inside, local authorities said.
The storm knocked out power to more than 2.8 million homes and businesses from New York to North Carolina, according to electric companies.
Isaias, which was briefly a Category 1 hurricane when it made landfall in North Carolina late on Monday, reduced the mobile home park in the north of the state to rubble hours later, leaving two people dead.
-With Reuters and Dana Chiueh
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