Benjamin Carroll

Severe Thunderstorms Topple Trees, Flood Streets From NJ to Long Island

What to Know

  • Monday began nice and sunny but severe thunderstorms rolled in by the evening commute, bringing strong winds and torrential rains
  • The storm flooded streets, toppled trees and led to power outages and significant fight delays
  • No major injuries were reported

Monday started as a nice, spring day, but by late afternoon thunderstorms roared into the tri-state, bringing torrential downpours, lightning and damaging winds, according to Storm Team 4. 

Cleanup was underway Monday night after the round of severe weather toppled trees, flooded streets and cut power in communities from New Jersey to parts of the Hudson Valley and western Long Island. Hours-long flight delays at Newark and Kennedy airports continued late Monday. 

In Pictures: Severe Thunderstorms Hammer Tri-State

After a hot and humid day, the powerful storms moved in on the heels of a cold front, hammering the city and surrounding areas. Multiple time-lapse videos show dark clouds descending east towards Manhattan as buildings disappear behind a wall of rain. Lightning flashes over Greenwich Village in one video. 

Monday’s severe thunderstorms felled trees in Ridgewood and other parts of New Jersey. Marc Santia reports.

The tempest toppled trees from the Hudson Valley to New Jersey — heavy  tree damage was reported on Manhattan's Upper West Side. One tree fell onto a car at West 78th Street and another split in half, blocking a street at West 167th Street. In New Jersey, multiple trees crashed onto cars in Bergen County and a downed tree fell onto part of the Palisades Parkway.

In Hawthorne, New Jersey, a tree crashed into the bedroom of Tom Bushnauskas as he slept. He was not injured, but had to tell his dad that a tree was in their home. 

"He was like, 'What do you mean the tree fell down?'" Bushnauskas told News 4. "I'm like, 'Well, it's in my room.'" 

A number of trees were reported down in New Jersey as severe weather moved through the tri-state Monday. In Hawthorne, a tree crashed into a house. Gus Rosendale reports.

Felled trees brought down powerlines across the tri-state, cutting power to nearly 2,000 people in New Jersey and more than 2,000 people on Long Island, according to PSE&G. 

Kelvin Smith, of Greenburgh, lost power when a small tree fell onto powerlines. 

"I opened up all the windows," Smith said. "All the windows and the shades just to let some light in."

Flood waters poured into the streets of Red Hook and Williamsburg, in Brooklyn, and washed over a parking lot in Elizabeth and over roads in Weehawken, New Jersey. Part of the busy Bronx River Parkway was flooded, and cars moved through swamped streets in Rosyln Heights, on Long Island. 

Rain seeped into the Dekalb Avenue station in Brooklyn, covering a platform in water. And motorists on an FDR Drive underpass had to contend with rain falling from an overpass above. 

A timelapse video shows menacing black clouds rolling in over New York City, obscuring the Top of the Rock camera.

Area airports -- Kennedy, LaGuardia and Newark -- instituted a traffic management program ahead of the severe weather. During the height of the storm, wind gusts neared 60 mph at Newark Airport, where flights were still delayed more than 5 hours late Monday night. At Kennedy, they were delayed 4 1/2 hours. Only LaGuardia had returned to normal by 10 p.m. 

More storms will continue into the night, possibly into early Tuesday, before tapering off. Tuesday and Wednesday will be nice, with highs in the low 80s and an abundance of sunshine, Storm Team 4 said.

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