Regardless of the fixed problem water has posed, the subway has not all the time completed an efficient job of decreasing the system’s vulnerability. Earlier than Hurricane Sandy, the Transportation Authority relied totally on sandbags and plywood to defend the subway from flooding and did little proactively to make the system extra waterproof. “We discovered our lesson,” Mr. Lhota advised The Times in an earlier interview.
Mr. Lhota, who as chairman of the Transportation Authority throughout Hurricane Sandy was credited for shortly restoring the subway, stated he made an disagreeable discovery final summer time when he assumed management of the transit company for a second time. Although the subway has tens of hundreds of drains designed to gather water and assist take away water from the system, they weren’t being correctly cleaned. “I don’t know why,” Mr. Lhota stated, including that clearing the drains has been a spotlight of the emergency plan.
Grouting crews fan out throughout the subways each night time, on the lookout for runnels down partitions and stalactites of muck oozing from ceilings, patching up incursions which are closest to electrical elements first. Since final summer time, over 750 leaks have been plugged and greater than 5,400 drain bins have been cleaned alongside over 100 miles of monitor. Crews have additionally cleaned greater than 17,000 of the subway’s 40,000 grates.
Nonetheless, the battle is endless, stated Gerard James, a construction maintainer for the Transportation Authority, as he stood inside a tunnel one night time, filling in leaks. “Typically you’ll plug a leak, and also you’ll come the subsequent day and it’s nonetheless leaking, and you must come and grout once more,” he stated. “However the water needs to be attended to.”