MTA Bridges and Tunnels to Implement Ban on Empty Tractor-Trailers and Tandem Trucks Starting at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday 

Crews Clearing Drains, Preparing Equipment, and Being Strategically Pre-Positioned to Respond Quickly to Any Weather-Related Challenges 

With a storm expected to bring heavy rain, strong winds and possible wet snow across the New York Metro area, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) today detailed all-agency preparations being made to keep customers and employees safe while delivering as much reliable service as possible during Tuesday’s morning rush hour, through tomorrow evening.

MTA employees will be deployed throughout the operating region spreading salt and clearing surfaces of snow, keeping signals, switches, and third rails operating, and attending to any weather-related challenges.  

New York City Subway and Staten Island Railway     

Due to the nature of the subway system, rainwater will inevitably go down into the system and impact infrastructure. NYC Transit’s focus during heavy rain events is to minimize impacts to service by keeping as much water out as possible and removing it quickly. 

NYC Transit’s Department of Subways has a fleet of emergency response equipment including emergency trucks, deployable pumps, debris trains and pump trains, ready to deploy in response to flooding conditions and debris in the roadway. Field personnel inspects and clean vents at flood-prone locations, and personnel is staged at critical locations including stations and yards, ready to deploy and respond to flooding conditions. 

New York City Buses  

MTA personnel will monitor routes for known flooding situations, and have detours prepared. Extra personnel will be on standby in the event of service disruptions or subway shutdowns.  

All bus facilities will have roof drains checked and ensure they are clear of debris and any loose materials will be secured. Emergency generators are being checked and will be ready in the event of a power outage. 

MTA Bridges and Tunnels    

MTA Bridges and Tunnels will ban empty tractor-trailers and tandem trucks beginning at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday. Pedestrian walkways at the Cross Bay Bridge and Marine Parkway Bridge will be closed during this same time period; pedestrian walkways at the RFK Bridge and Henry Hudson Bridge may close depending on weather conditions. 

Bridges and Tunnels personnel have activated full inclement weather preparedness for all facilities and the Operations Command Center Weather Desk will monitor the forecast. Over 9,600 tons of roadway deicer and 115 pieces of storm fighting equipment readied and available for deployment.  

Bridges are equipped with embedded roadway sensors for temperature and above-ground atmospheric sensors that deliver real-time information on wind velocity, wind direction, humidity and precipitation via wireless communication. Additional restrictions may be put in place if conditions warrant.  

Metro-North Railroad 

Metro-North Railroad crews will be pre-positioned around the system ready to respond to any weather-related issues. Metro-North crews have equipment on hand to be able to respond quickly as conditions warrant – chainsaws for clearing downed trees, pumps in the event of flooded areas, identifying locations and availability of supplies for replacing damaged utility poles and crossing gates. Diesel locomotives will also be pre-positioned to minimize any potential service impacts. 

In the event of snow, Metro-North’s snow-fighting equipment is tested, and strategically positioned at facilities around the system. Protective heat circuits are being verified to be operational, air brake lines are being purged of any moisture to prevent them from freezing, and electric trains are fitted with special third rail shoes to prevent snow from accumulating. Switches – the interlocking tracks that allow rail traffic controllers to route trains from one track to another – use electric/gas switch heaters to melt snow. 

Long Island Rail Road 

The Long Island Rail Road will pre-position crews and diesel locomotives to minimize service disruptions.   

Additional personnel will be added this afternoon through the overnight hours to identify and quickly address possible track, signal and power challenges caused by flooding, washouts, downed trees and other potential storm damage. Personnel will survey and clear drainage areas where necessary, fortify key locations and look for trees requiring removal as well as any track structures requiring attention. 

LIRR crews have equipment on hand to be able to respond quickly as conditions warrant – chainsaws for clearing downed trees, pumps in the event of flooded areas, identifying locations and availability of supplies for replacing damaged utility poles and crossing gates.    


Access-A-Ride paratransit will continue to provide service. Customers may experience additional delays and wait times. Customers may want to consider adjusting or canceling their travel plans. 
Paratransit Command Center will be monitoring the storm to track and respond to any customer or day of service issues.