Speed Reads

'Niagara Falls-level water'

New York governor predicts 'we're going to have to deal with' flooding with 'great regularity' due to climate change

After major flooding on the East Coast left at least 15 people dead on Wednesday, New York Gov. (D) Kathy Hochul predicted major storms will cause similar problems "with great regularity" going forward. 

New York saw historic flooding Wednesday evening as the remnants of Hurricane Ida came to the state, and in a news conference Thursday, Hochul called for taking steps to ensure this won't "happen again," including additional infrastructure investments. 

"Because of climate change, unfortunately, this is something we're going to have to deal with with great regularity," she said. 

Hochul went on to say that such "catastrophic flooding events" are "not unusual anymore" but should instead be "considered the normal course of business," calling on homeowners to be prepared with evacuation plans, as she can't "guarantee it won't happen again tomorrow." The governor called for a report to investigate possible "intelligence failures" leading up to the storm, asking whether it "could have been anticipated" that it would bring "Niagara Falls-level water to the streets of New York." 

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) also described the storm as the "biggest wake-up call we could possibly get," while urging New Yorkers to assume the worst with every storm going forward because weather projections are "failing us." 

"We need to start communicating to people that we should assume things are going to be much worse in literally every situation," he said.