Updated 10/31/2012 07:42 PM
Trains on Hudson and Port Jervis lines suspended for commuters
A nightmare for New York City commuters on the east and west side of the Hudson River. There are no trains running into New York City. As our YNN's Elaina Athans tells us, the problems are compounding as folks try to get back to their daily routine.
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BEACON, N.Y. -- "It's all hands on deck right now on behalf of all of our customers," said MTA Chairman and CEO Joe Lhota.
Mass transit wiped out for Hudson Valley commuters. Trains on the Port Jervis Line and the Hudson Line are suspended after Hurricane Sandy sucker punched the New York Metro region.
"These are significant challenges that we're facing and problems that we've never expected before," said Governor Andrew Cuomo.
Governor Andrew Cuomo, transportation leaders and other elected officials took an aerial tour of the Hudson line. The railway experienced significant flooding. There's washouts in some spots and sub stations were damaged by water. Every inch of the line will have to be checked before service resumes and there's no saying when that'll happen.
"Our goal is to every day get this service back to normal, back to situation we were used to last week and if not even better," said Lhota.
Every day the tracks are closed off to commuters, it’s costing the MTA $18 million is lost revenue.
At the Beacon train station, some of that repair work has started. MTA workers were pumping out pools of water trapped in a passenger tunnel. The station has become an economic driver for Beacon. Fifty percent of the riders come from Orange County.
"MTA is a big portion of our community. With this mass transit, Beacon has been successful," said Beacon Mayor Randy Casale.
The roadway has become the only option for commuters but even that is problematic.
"If you're trying to get into Manhattan, it really is a gridlock there. I mean, people who live in Brooklyn are facing two to three hour commutes," said Tri-State Transportation Campaign spokesperson Nadine Lemmon.
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has just added another hurdle for the commuters looking to drive themselves into the city. There's now a car pooling rule.
"Three or more people per vehicle all day on Thursday and all day on Friday," said Bloomberg.
The Harlem line is operating now, but on limited service. The MTA is urging all Metro-North customers to hold onto their October monthly and weekly tickets. They'll be honored through next Monday, November 5th.