Press Release






The National Weather Service has issued a Tropical Storm Watch and a Storm Surge Watch for New York City until further notice


New York City beaches closed for swimming on Sunday


September 2, 2016 — The New York City Emergency Management Department urges New Yorkers to prepare for potential impacts of Tropical Storm Hermine. The National Weather Service has issued a Tropical Storm Watch for the New York City area until further notice. A Storm Surge Watch has also been issued for New York City coastal areas until further notice. A Tropical Storm Watch is issued 48 hours in advance of the possible onset of tropical-storm-force winds, which include sustained wind speeds of 39 mph – 74 mph. During a Tropical Storm Watch and Storm Surge Watch, New Yorkers are advised to prepare their homes for potential storm impacts and review their emergency plans in case a Hurricane or Tropical Storm Warning is issued.

"The City has more than 30 agencies working together to prepare for the possible effects of Tropical Storm Hermine," said Mayor de Blasio. "I urge New Yorkers to take the necessary steps to prepare themselves and their families for whatever this storm may bring. If you live in flood-prone areas, secure your properties. Prepare your Go Bags, charge your cell phone batteries, and don't forget to check in on relatives, friends, and neighbors."

The current track shows Hermine over Southern Georgia and forecast to move northeast, nearing the North Carolina Coast early Saturday morning. By early Sunday, the storm will be well offshore of Virginia and will slowly track north toward Long Island before stalling and remaining off shore through Wednesday morning. While there is uncertainty in the track, intensity and speed of Tropical Storm Hermine, possible impacts to the City include strong, dangerous rip currents, high surf, coastal flooding, heavy rain, and strong winds. New York City beaches will be closed for swimming on Sunday, September 4.

NYC Emergency Management remains in constant communication with the National Hurricane Center and the National Weather Service to track and monitor Tropical Storm Hermine and has taken a number of steps to prepare for potential impacts to the City. The City's Situation Room has been activated, and NYC Emergency Management has coordinated daily interagency conference calls to facilitate preparations with city and state agencies and private partners.

The City's Flash Flood Emergency Plan has also been activated to help mitigate potential flash flooding and ensure a quick, effective, and coordinated response to any flash flood events that do occur. The plan is activated when rainfall rates are forecast to reach one inch an hour for an hour or longer.

Flash flooding can occur with little or no warning due to the large number of paved surfaces across the city. These surfaces do not allow rainwater to be absorbed into the ground and can result in storm drains often being overwhelmed, causing localized flooding. NYC Emergency Management works closely with NYPD, FDNY, Department of Environmental Protection, Department of Sanitation, Department of Transportation, Department of Parks and Recreation, and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority to mitigate the impact of flash floods. New Yorkers are encouraged to report clogged catch basins and areas of standing water to 3-1-1.

Additionally, the City's Downed Tree Task Force has been placed on stand-by. This multi-agency task force is responsible for coordinating the response to a large downed tree event.

NYC Emergency Management also encourages New Yorkers to take the following steps to prepare ahead of the storm:

  • Prepare a Go Bag that you can grab in case you need to leave your home in a hurry. For more information about what to pack in a Go Bag, visit
  • Know your flood risk. To learn more about coastal flood risk in New York City, visit the FEMA Region II Coastal Analysis and Mapping website for flood hazard information.
  • Consider getting flood insurance. Protection against loss due to floods is not covered under a homeowner's policy. Contact your property/casualty agent or broker about eligibility for flood insurance. For more information, visit the National Flood Insurance Program online at
  • If you live in a flood-susceptible area, keep materials, such as sandbags, plywood, plastic sheeting, and lumber, on hand to help protect your home.
  • Bring inside loose, lightweight objects, such as lawn furniture and garbage cans.
  • Anchor objects that will be unsafe to bring inside, such as gas grills or propane tanks.
  • Make an itemized list of personal property, including furnishings, clothing, and valuables.
  • Move valuable items from basements to upper floors. (Basements are vulnerable to flooding.)
  • Charge cell phone batteries.
  • Turn your refrigerator and freezer to a colder setting. If you lose power, items that need refrigeration will stay cooler for longer.
  • Check on friends, relatives, and neighbors, especially older adults and people with disabilities, access and functional needs, or health conditions. Help them to prepare if needed.
  • Fill out an Emergency Reference Card, which will contain important contacts for you and your family in the event of any emergency.
  • Learn the safest route from your home or workplace to safe, high ground in case you have to evacuate. This should be part of your household disaster plan.
  • During periods of high winds, residents should use caution when walking or driving high profile vehicles. Winds at these speeds can cause flying debris, turn unsecured objects into projectiles, and cause power outages.
Stay informed. Before and during an emergency, the City will send emergency alerts and updates to New Yorkers through various channels including Notify NYC, the City's free emergency notification system. Through Notify NYC, New Yorkers can receive phone calls, text messages, and/or emails alerts about traffic and transit disruptions and other emergencies. To sign up for Notify NYC, call 311, visit, or follow @NotifyNYC on Twitter.


MEDIA CONTACT: Nancy Silvestri/Omar Bourne (NYC Emergency Management) (718) 422-4888

STAY CONNECTED: Twitter: @NotifyNYC (emergency notifications); @nycoem (emergency preparedness info); Facebook: /NYCemergencymanagement