Henri leaves thousands without power in Connecticut, New Jersey
NEW YORK - Tropical Storm Henri has plunged several homes into the dark across the New York City metropolitan area, with Connecticut and New Jersey bearing the brunt.
According to Eversource, nearly 30,000 people in Connecticut are without power, the largest percentage by far in the area.
Jersey Central reported more than 2,300 people in New Jersey are without power.
According to PSEG Long Island, more than 50 active outages have been reported across the area of Sunday late afternoon, affecting more than 700 customers.
ConEd reported more than 40 outages, affecting nearly 400 customers, in New York City and its northern suburbs.
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National Grid reported 74,000 customers without power in Rhode Island.
Power companies are still urging residents to report outages and stay away from downed trees and power lines. Some companies have even hired out-of-state crews to help restore the power.
The storm was downgraded from a hurricane to a tropical storm, and made landfall near Westerly, R.I., Sunday afternoon with sustained winds of about 60 mph and gusts of up to 70 mph, according to the National Hurricane Center. Henri has since weakened and now has sustained winds of 50 mph as it moves inland.
Few early reports of major damage due to wind or surf came in, but officials warned of the danger of spot flooding in inland areas over the next few days.
Millions in southern New England and New York braced for the possibility of toppled trees, extended power outages and flooding from a storm system that threatened to linger over the region well into Monday.
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Several major bridges in Rhode Island, which stitch together much of the state, were briefly shuttered Sunday, and some coastal roads were nearly impassable.
Storm-related flooding was blamed for major delays in the Hartford suburb of Wethersfield along Interstate 91 northbound, a major artery through Connecticut’s capital city. Brian Foley, special assistant to the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection, tweeted that traffic was reduced to one lane and there were multiple accidents. Traffic cameras showed numerous vehicles backed up. Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont on Twitter urged motorists to "avoid the area while crews work to address the situation."
Some communities in central New Jersey were inundated with as much as 8 inches (20 centimeters) by midday Sunday. In Jamesburg, television video footage showed flooded downtown streets and cars almost completely submerged.
President Joe Biden declared disasters in much of the region, opening the purse strings for federal recovery aid. The White House said Biden discussed preparations with northeastern governors and that New York Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul, who succeeds Cuomo on Tuesday, also participated.
The Associated Press contributed to this report. This story was reported from Los Angeles.