Nor’easter Buries New York City Under Blanket Of Snow; Essential Workers Brave Their Way Out – CBS New York


NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A Nor’easter buried New York City under a blanket of snow on Saturday.

Mayor Eric Adams traveled across the five boroughs to tour the storm conditions.

READ MORE: SNOW TOTALS: Who Was Hit Hardest By Saturday’s Nor’easter?

“Be careful, bundle up. Good day to stay home if you don’t have to go out,” he said.

WATCH: NYC Mayor Adams Gives Update On Storm Conditions

The mayor urged people to stay home or use public transportation.

“DSNY, Transit, NYPD, FDNY, all the team of civil servants is doing their job serving the city, keeping the streets passable,” he told CBS2.

CBS2’s Dave Carlin reported from the Upper West Side, where people were out walking their dogs.

“This is Remmy… He absolutely loves the snow. I’m also having a ball — I’m a little cold, he’s not,” one woman said.

Others were on their way to work.

“I’m an essential worker. I’m just so grateful transit is working wonderful, the trains are running, and everything is good so far,” another woman said. “I work at a gourmet supermarket and I serve the customers in the neighborhood food. So I guess people are going to come to the store for bread, and eggs, and stuff this morning.”

SEE IT: Dogs Enjoy Playing In Snow At Central Park

“I’m selling furniture, because I’ve got to pay rent,” another person added. “I love being out here, it’s a beautiful day. Come out and see the world.”

Other workers climbed ladders to clear snow from outdoor dining structures. When snow blowers wouldn’t move the mountains, it meant shoveling by hand.

Fortunately, the snow was powdery, relieving the stress of a normally exhausting task.

Trucks hit the streets in Washington Heights so drivers could get around and business owners grabbed shovels, clearing sidewalks in front of their establishments.

Carlin also found some people sledding — and even cross country skiing in Central Park.

“It was really good. The snow is really good, it’s not like super hard, so there’s not so many bumps,” one young New Yorker said.

The Central Park Conservancy was out all night, making it more accessible for visitors.

Video from the nonprofit shows crews plowing the roadways and shoveling stairs. They urge people to avoid walking on icy bodies of water and under trees.

As CBS2’s Aundrea Cline-Thomas reports, Queens got hit the hardest of all the boroughs.

From shovels and snow blowers to large plows, the clean-up was fully underway in Whitestone early Saturday afternoon.

Luca Antonelli’s construction equipment came in handy.

“These two buildings here and that’s all, and then I’m going to help some people out if I can, whatever,” he said. “And then we go home. We have a nice drink, serve some soup and relax.”

Snow totals in Queens were among the highest in the city, up to 11 inches.

Wayne Kiladitis was digging out his car, hoping the snow from plows don’t block him in.

“They can pile up the snow against the cars, and then the temperature at night can go down and it turns into ice, so it’s better to get it done now,” he said.

The sanitation department asks that when clearing off your car, put the snow against a building or on the curb instead of in the street or bike lanes.

Sanitation crews have been crisscrossing the city, making multiple passes as the strong winds made it difficult to make progress, especially on the highways.

“You have to run a tandem operation. That’s multiple pieces running a coordinated pass spreading salt behind it. The conditions are still bad. We’re asking everyone to still be careful out here,” Department of Sanitation Commissioner Edward Grayson said.

READ MORE: ‘The Shore Is Getting Clobbered:’ Blizzard Conditions Confirmed As Winds Whip Snow On Jersey Shore

To prepare for the storm, DSNY started pretreating 700 miles of city streets two days ago. The department also has 280,000 tons of salt, along with 1,800 plows and 700 salt spreaders at their disposal.

LINKCheck The Latest Forecast

DSNY crews were working 12-hour days with some additional plow support from the Department of Transportation and the Parks Department.

“The key thing with a storm like this, it’s been snowing for so many hours, it’s only finally starting to taper off, so we just ask those homeowners to have patience, but we’re certainly making the rounds and you’re gonna see plows tonight. We’re making progress through every route in the city,” Grayson said.

The commissioner says crews will continue to work through the night to get things cleared away.

“I think we’re gonna see fully plowed streets a little later this evening, where we’ve made at least a pass. The key thing for everyone to think about now is you’re gonna have, coupled with the fact that it’s really, really cold, you’re gonna have some residual snow on the roads. It’s gonna take time for the calcium chloride and the salt to really do its job ’cause we’re not gonna get much help from Mother Nature and we’re certainly not gonna get much help on the overnight because it’s just gonna get colder and darker,” he said.

WATCH: NYC Sanitation Commissioner Gives Update On Road Conditions

The line to refuel at the sanitation garage in Long Island City snaked around the block after a long day, and the work was far from over.

Drivers like Hamde Zeibeia got an early start, too, to head to work.

“On the Long Island Expressway, when you get off the tunnel, you couldn’t make it up. Halfway up, a lot of cars just had to turn around,” he said.

Humberto Deanda had to navigate those conditions on his e-bike.

“Even the police told me, ‘You can’t ride your electric bike.’ I was like, I’m already outside. It was good though. I have to come in and open the store, so no choice,” he said.

But you know the saying about all work and no play? Well, 4-year-old Amnin Aouchiche took it to heart.

“Today is a big winter day. I’m having fun,” he said.

At Astoria Park, the snow day brought out the kid in everyone.

CBS2’s Christina Fan was in Long Island City, where the wind kept blowing the snow back onto recently cleared roads and sidewalks.

“I’ve been over here since 7 this morning,” said one man out shoveling. “It’s good, you know, arm work. It’s a workout.”

WATCH: CBS2’s Christina Fan Reports From Long Island City, Queens 

Fan spoke with another man who said his dog loves the snow.

“This type of dog loves to be outside in rough weather. The rougher the better,” he said. “They’re actually not city dogs, so this is great for her. It’s just unfortunate that I’m freezing my butt cheeks off.”

On Staten Island, some streets were empty as people stayed clear of the icy roads. More than half a foot of snow fell in some areas.

Because the snow coupled with high wind speeds could cause blizzard-like conditions, outdoor dining in the city has been suspended.

LINK: Winter Storm Survival Guide

Vaccine appointments at city run sites for Saturday have also been rescheduled for Sunday.

WATCH: MTA Chair Janno Lieber On Status Of Mass Transit

The weather also impacted subway service. The M line is partially suspended. There is no service between Myrtle Avenue and Delancey Street-Essex Street. There are also delays on the A, N and Q lines, as well as the Rockaway Park and Franklin Avenue shuttles.


MORE NEWS: Long Island Slammed With Snow, Winds Create Whiteout Conditions As Nor’easter Moves Through

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