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Friday, September 17, 2010

Severe Storm in New Yark City

One dead as severe storm sweeps through NYC.

Severe Storm in New Yark
A brief but severe storm packing winds up to 100 mph, swept through New York City on Thursday night, uprooting trees and damaging cars and leaving one person dead.

A woman was killed when a tree fell on her car as it was parked on a road in Queens. Iline Leuakis, 30, of Mechanicsburg, Pa., who was sitting in the driver's seat, was pronounced dead at the scene, while a 60-year-old passenger suffered minor injuries, police said.

Numerous minor injuries were reported elsewhere.

The storm created havoc with the evening commute and looked set to cause further chaos on Friday.

At 5 a.m. on Friday, NBC News reported that every Long Island Rail Road line was experiencing delays except for the Port Washington line, which was suspended. Services on the line were not expected to be restored in time for morning commute. Local and express buses were running with "extensive delays", the Metropolitan Transport Authority said.

New Jersey Transit reported delays of 20 to 30 minutes during Thursday night's rush hour but normal service was restored around 7:45 p.m.

The storm hit just after 5 p.m., when the National Weather Service briefly issued a tornado warning for Staten Island. Shortly afterward, warnings were issued for Brooklyn and Queens.

"The good news is that most people were safe, just annoyed — traffic being bad or a tree coming down in their yard," Mayor Michael Bloomberg said after touring storm damage in Queens.

'It was like a poltergeist'
The National Weather Service said it would assess the damage on Friday to determine whether a tornado had actually touched down.

Fire officials were inspecting 10 buildings in Brooklyn whose roofs were peeled off or tattered by the wind.

"A huge tree limb, like 25 feet long, flew right up the street, up the hill and stopped in the middle of the air 50 feet up in this intersection and started spinning," said Steve Carlisle, 54. "It was like a poltergeist."

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