Long Island Rail Road service was partially restored a day after trains were halted when Tropical Storm Isaias downed trees and power lines across the region.
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority said trains are running on the Babylon, Far Rockaway, Hempstead, Long Beach, Port Washington and West Hempstead branches. But service remains suspended on the Huntington/Port Jefferson, Montauk, Oyster Bay, and Ronkonkoma/Greenport branches due to fallen trees, downed utility poles, and power lines, the MTA added.
“One of the guiding principles of LIRR Forward is to proactively address critical issues that we can control and to be as prepared as we can be for things outside of our control like Mother Nature,” said LIRR President Phil Eng.
Eng said the LIRR has cleared hundreds of miles of trees and vegetation along the tracks, worked with PSEG-Long Island to harden more than 220 transmission and distribution poles along the tracks, and repaired track infrastructure to mitigate the impacts of storms well before Isaias arrived.
But strong winds and nearly 80 mph gusts downed more trees than LI could handle. In addition to the LIRR suspension, the storm caused many roads to be blocked by fallen trees and left nearly 400,000 PSEG-LI customers without power at the peak of the storm.
The LIRR urged riders to allow extra travel time and expect some delays and cancellations Wednesday as transit employees continue to work around the clock to remove trees, utility poles, and debris, as well as repair track and signal damage so the agency can restore additional service.
The storm similarly impacted the MTA’s other systems across the New York Metro area, including the New York City Subway, buses, and Metro-North Railroad.
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