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Subway, bus and rail transportation in and around New York City will continue to be shut down until further notice, according to the Mass Transportation Association. As of 2 p.m. Monday, the Holland Tunnel and the Hugh L. Carey Tunnel between Brooklyn and the Battery will be closed, per order of Governor Andrew Cuomo. There are no incoming or outgoing flights at LaGuardia Airport, New York’s Kennedy Airport and Newark Liberty International Airport, but all three are open, a Port Authority spokesman said Monday afternoon. And New York City schools will remain closed Tuesday.
As for when the New York City subway, Metro North and the Long Island Railroad will be up-and-running again, MTA officials are taking a wait-and-see approach. In an ideal situation — when structural damage is not an issue — it takes 12 hours to restore service after a storm has passed, but that is “unlikely to happen” given the current tracking of Hurricane Sandy, said MTA spokesman Aron Donovan.
The MTA does have some of its 65,000 staffers on stand-by monitoring the infrastructure in response to any reports of damage. As of Monday afternoon, flooding at the Croton-Harmon station had affected 240 of its 1,400 parking spaces and at the Beacon station 20 of the 200 spaces were lost, the spokesman said.
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The MTA is keeping track of its seven bridges and two tunnels on a case-by-case basis, the spokesman said. Officials are also not about to make any predictions about when subway service may be resrored.
“The storm hasn’t even hit yet,” MTA spokeswoman Deirdre Parker said. “First we will have to assess whatever damage there might be to the system, walk the tracks and make sure that everything is safe. Then we will start to put trains and crews back in place, but that could be a while getting everything in order. We have [certain] employees available — train crews and station agents to be sent out. There are enough people available to get started.”
A spokesman at the Joint Information Center said it is premature to give any sort of estimate of potential economic damage brought on by Hurricane Sandy.