Post Sandy pump-out under way in New York Nov 2012
Peter Kenyon, TunnelTalk
The massive pumping out operation post Superstorm Sandy to restore the flood-damaged transportation tunnels serving Manhattan, Queens and New Jersey, continues.
Both the Queens Midtown and Hugh L Carey (also known as the Brooklyn Battery) traffic tunnels - which between them carry an average daily count of 127,500 vehicles - remain closed.
New York's Metropolitan Transport Authority (MTA) confirmed that workers are still pumping out both tunnels using hoses and pumper trucks; some 43 million gallons of water gushed into each tube of the Carey Tunnel during the height of the storm, filling the 1.7 mile long tubes from floor to ceiling; the twin tubes of the 1.6 mile long Queens Midtown Tunnel took on 30 million gallons of water.

Recovery work in the Hugh L Carey traffic tunnel, which was flooded floor-to-ceiling by Superstorm Sandy

Only when all the water is pumped out can work start on inspection and testing of the electrical and vent systems.
Meanwhile two of the four East River Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) tunnels linking lower Manhattan and Brooklyn are reported by MTA to have suffered serious water damage, and remain closed, while South Ferry Station in Manhattan is also closed after becoming totally inundated.
Underground transportation links in and to New York City

Underground transportation links in and to New York City

With the East River tunnels being shared by the MTA-run LIRR, New Jersey Transit services and Amtrak's own inter-city services, services are running at only 45 per cent said MTA on yesterday (Wednesday October 7). Amtrak, which owns and is responsible for maintaining the tunnels, said it is continuing recovery work.
Service disruptions are also reported between Brooklyn and Queens as a result of ongoing repairs to damaged communications and signal equipment inside the Greenpoint tube under Newtown Creek.
MTA workers were in the 14th Street Tunnel under the East River on Monday using a pump train to pump out seawater from the tube that serves the L-subway service. Similar equipment was also being used to pump out the Cranberry tube that carries A and C trains, and the 53rd Street Tunnel that carries E and M trains.
The PATH rail service that links Manhattan with the New Jersey mainland via four tubes under the Hudson River only began operating a limited rail service on Tuesday (November 6). Operator the Ports Authority of New York and New Jersey said: "The PATH system suffered unprecedented and widespread flooding in the tunnels and at multiple stations, as well as power outages that shut down signals and switches. Crews continue to work to restore power and to pump water from some of the tunnels."
  • Pump train on 14<sup>th</sup> St Tunnel

    Pump train on 14th St Tunnel

  • Cranberry tube inundation

    Cranberry tube inundation

  • 53<sup>rd</sup> St tunnel clean up

    53rd St tunnel clean up

The Holland traffic tunnel that connects Manhattan with New Jersey under the Hudson River, which also took on water, reopened one lane of the south tube for bus commuters only, on Thursday last week. The Ports Authority then spent three days pumping out the north tubes, closed the south tube for pumping out and opened the north tube to commuter buses only. As of Tuesday it was fully opened in both directions to all traffic for the first time since Sunday last week (October 28).
The Lincoln Tunnel is fully open and remained relatively unaffected by Sandy compared with other under-river crossings.
Vulnerability of cities exposed again - TunnelTalk, November 2012
Superstorm devastates New York region - TunnelTalk, November 2012
Tide gates save Midtown tunnel from floods - TunnelTalk, November 2012
New York tunneling projects brace for Irene - TunnelTalk, August 2011
New York tunneling projects weather Irene - TunnelTalk, August 2011
Bangkok examines flood prevention plans - TunnelTalk, December 2011
In search of resilient cities - TunnelTalk, December 2011

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