The death toll from the remnants of Hurricane Ida’s blast through the Northeast
rose Thursday after fierce downpours and flooding, claiming four times as many lives
as the storm’s initial landfall.
At least 46 people died Wednesday and Thursday, state and local officials said.
Twenty-three deaths were reported in New Jersey, 16 in New York, five in
Pennsylvania, one in Maryland, and one in Connecticut.
The carnage comes days after Hurricane Ida barreled ashore Sunday in Louisiana
packing 150 mph winds. At least 9 deaths due to flooding and carbon monoxide
poisoning have been reported in Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama.
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy confirmed the 23 deaths in his state in a news
conference Thursday afternoon. The majority of the deaths were people who got
caught in their vehicles by flooding and were overtaken by the water, he said.
Please keep every one of them and their families in your prayers, and let’s
hope that that number doesn’t go up,” Murphy said. He added: “Please stay off the
roads. We’re not out of this yet.”
Standing beside the governor, U.S. Rep. Tom Malinowski told Americans the disaster
should be a “wake-up call.”
“Anybody who believes that it’s too expensive to stop climate change … has got to
wake up to the fact that we cannot afford not to,” Malinowski said.
At least 13 people died in New York City, and suburban Westchester County reported
In New York City, the downpours turned streets into rivers and swamped basement
and first-floor apartments. The National Weather Service office in New York declared
a flash flood emergency, a rare warning for situations where the flooding is “leading
to a severe threat to human life and catastrophic damage.”
De Blasio said Thursday that a travel advisory remained in effect and that all non-
emergency vehicles were advised to stay off of city streets while cleanup continued.
“Our hearts ache for the lives lost in last night’s storm,” de Blasio tweeted. “They were
our fellow New Yorkers and to their families, your city will be there for you in the
The good news is that Ida has run its course. The center of the storm is more than
100 miles east of Massachusetts and moving to the northeast, AccuWeather Senior
Meteorologist John Feerick said.
“As far as the United States goes, it’s gone,” Feerick told USA TODAY. “We were
certainly expecting a lot of rain, but look at how quickly it came down, especially in
cities like New York. Three, 4 inches in an hour that overwhelmed the infrastructure.”