News / USA

Snowstorm Is First Big Test for NYC's New Mayor

Snowstorm First Big Test for NYC's New Mayori
X
January 03, 2014 9:29 PM
New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio had been in office fewer than 48 hours when he was faced with his first big test - a major snowstorm. It brought up to 35 centimeters of snow, snarling traffic and slowing public transportation. VOA’s Adam Phillips filed this report from the Manhattan streets.
Adam Phillips
New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio had been in office fewer than 48 hours when he was faced with his first big test - a major snowstorm. It brought up to 35 centimeters of snow, snarling traffic and slowing public transportation.

When New Yorkers awoke Friday morning, they were greeted with bitter cold winds, enough snow to close schools and a firm warning from the Big Apple’s new chief executive.  

“If you do not need to travel today, please stay home. If you do have to travel, take mass transit. Yes, there will be some delays, but it will be safe, and it will help us to get the city 100 percent back in full running order,” said De Blasio.
 
Ceanup crews had made significant headway early, clearing the major roadways and pedestrian thoroughfares of the snow that had fallen overnight.
 
Charles Edmund, part of an army of at least 10,000 charged with getting life back to normal, said, “I am here shoveling snow just to make the city safe, so people could get to work on time.”

The economic impact of a major storm can be severe. One recent storm cost the city tens of millions of dollars in cleanup costs, and the local economy hundreds of millions in lost sales, worker productivity and tourist dollars.

Still, Michigan visitor Kathy Weaver was resolute. “We are shopping, we’re seeing the sights, and hopefully going to find some good deals!”  

At midday, city temperatures remained far below freezing. And, while public transportation and the shops were lurching back to normal, Connie Wong and her family gave the clean-up - and, by extension Mayor De Blasio - mixed reviews.   

“I think the city could have done a little better with the streets. The sidewalks are great, but the streets themselves - I think they need a better clearing so we can get [our baby] carriages across,”  said Wong.

In early January, the Northeast winter and De Blasio’s mayoral term are still in their infancy. There will be plenty of time to take the temperature of the new administration’s competence as the months unfold.

You May Like

Ebola Death Toll Nears 5,000 as Virus Advances

West Africa bears heaviest burden; Mali toddler’s death raises new fears More

Jordan’s Battle With Islamic State Militants Carries Domestic Risks

Despite Western concerns that IS militants are preparing a Jordanian offensive, analysts call the kingdom's solid intel a strong deterrent More

Asian-Americans Assume Office in Record Numbers

Steadily deepening engagement in local politics pays off for politicians like Chinese-American Judy Chu More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Comanche Chief Quanah Parker’s Century-Old House Falling Apart

One of the most fascinating people in U.S. history was Quanah Parker, the last chief of the American Indian tribe, the Comanche. He was the son of a Comanche warrior and a white woman who had been captured by the Indians. Parker was a fierce warrior until 1875 when he led his people to Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and took on a new, peaceful life. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Cache, Oklahoma, Quanah’s image remains strong among his people, but part of his heritage is in danger of disappearing.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid