As everyone who has been to New York City knows, without its underground arteries - the subway system - the city is if not dead, than certainly in an indefinite coma. By that logic, New York will not get out of the critical ward for many days, because hours ago the head of the New York City’s transit system just called Hurricane Sandy "the most devastating event to the city’s subway system ever." At last check seven subway tunnels under the East River had flooded, as did the Queens Midtown Tunnel—and Metropolitan Transit Authority chairman Joseph Lhota said there is “no firm timeline” for when the system would be back up and running. According to other MTA employees it would take between 14 hours and 4 days just to pump the water out of the subway system. We'll take the over. And as long as there are no subways, there are no clerical and support workers, there is no Wall Street, there is no beating heart to the city.
A summary of which subway lines are most susceptible to flooding via the NYT, and brief commentary:
Seven subway tunnels under the East River flooded, according to Joseph J. Lhota, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority chairman. A spokesman said it was unclear how long it would take to pump them out. The Long Island Rail Road erected a water dam at its West Side Yards to keep Penn Station and East River tunnels dry, but one tunnel had flooding, Mr. Lhota said. Metro North lost power on two of its lines north of 59th Street.
Instead of subway trains... water:
A representative (unverified) snapshot of what NY's subways looked like at the peak.
For some stunning footage of what will certainly be an epic struggle to regain control of New York's underground floods watch the clip below: