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tv   MSNBC News Live  MSNBC  August 28, 2011 6:00am-7:00am PDT

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good morning, everyone. it's just past 9:00 a.m. here on the east coast. 6:00 a.m. out west. we have some big news in from the national hurricane center regarding tropical storm irene. you heard right. hurricane irene has been officially downgraded from a category 1 hurricane to a tropical storm that will certainly be met with good news on a official level for many as this horrible storm don't churn up the eastern seaboard.
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squarely in its sights new york city and the surrounding areas, long island and new jersey, connecticut has been brutally feeling the brunt of it particularly along the coast there with the connecticut river. not out of the woods yet. massachusetts and beyond all the way up to maine. it's very important, everyone, to keep in mind despite the tropical storm downgrade there's still horrific winds and extended rains which mean an already saturated northeast will continue to get pounding rains and potential for flooding is very serious. another good morning to all of you. i'm alex witt here on msnbc world headquarters. we're staying on with our extended coverage. we'll go our meteorologist bill karins with the official weather update. good morning. >> hurricane center has now just broadcast this down to a tropical storm. it's making landfall in new york city. that shouldn't come as any surprise whatsoever because we haven't seen within like that. we're seeing storm surge as it pushes inland. a lot of heavy rain northward.
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just because it's a tropical storm, still see a lot of power outages, the life threatening portion will go throughout the afternoon hours in new england and late morning. people should stay indoors until the storm has gone by. looking better down by chesapeake bay and southern new jersey. the sun is even out in a few spots. that's the update now. now with the tropical storm. back to you. >> we're going to go over across the river from where i am at 30 rock to my colleague, natalie morales who is in hoboken, new jersey. she's seen the rising waters of the hudson river. got to cause concern for many including you about the safety of your home. good morning. >> reporter: good morning to you alex. that's right. you see right behind me the water levels. it's up about a foot already. it's got about another 18 inches or maybe two feet to go before it goes over the banks here and some pretty residential areas here, very populated residential
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areas. this is a town that has 40 or 50,000 residents. i am among them. a lot of people took precautions and put sand bags around their homes. the concern when this was a full blown hurricane they could perhaps be some sort of tidal wave into the streets that could move out towards some of the further inland areas. now rear not seeing that happen. that's the good news. the tropical storm downgraded also good news. but as you mentioned the concern is certainly far from over because this is very much a water event. it will be raining for hours. we're already in saturated areas. there have been floods here over the last month. this is the wettest month on record in new jersey and new york. so we're already dealing with pretty bad conditions and now compounded by now tropical storm irene as well. so flooding remains an ongoing concern. a lot of people are out walking the streets trying to check things out. you see people town there along the river front. they are being advised not to do
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that. although here there's no downed electrical wires. there are areas that's flooded there are some downed electrical wires. there's a concern that people can get electrocuted. the warning continues to be to stay in your homes until this is completely over and it's going to be hours yet, alex. >> i'm glad you reiterated the warnings from the officials to stay inside. how about power because i know across the state of new jersey overall there are 400,000 without power, which has put about 15,000 people in shelters overnight. can you see lights coming on? have you lost power? >> reporter: we do have -- we have power here if you look here right behind me the buildings. we have power here. we're being told about 9,000 or so customers could soon be without power here in this community, but inland as you
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mentioned there are some 400,000 people in homes without power throughout the state of new jersey as governor chris christie said earlier. there's the danger, people think it's not so bad, let me get my suv i can barrel through this, not a problem. we had reports of people being swept away in their cars. so do not think because you see a puddle of water it's just six inches of water. it could be a lot more. do not get in your cars. don't chance things. it's a risk not worth taking, alex. again, they are expecting more power outages. this is not yet over. it is a tropical storm now, but there are rising waters and the power, the issue of power is still in question here as to, we may be out of power for a couple of days down the road still. so for now things are very slow. still a developing situation and certainly not worth a risk. >> let's hope all of our viewers are listening to you and the officials in hoboken, new
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jersey. of course irene is still swirling over new york city right now. it's wet, it is messy, we have our reporters all over the city. there are those lucky few getting pelted with heavy rains and rising waters also threatening lower parts of manhattan, queens, brooklyn, staten island, the bronx. coney island is especially windy right now. we just saw our colleague peter alexander there. overall more than 200,000 people in the new york city area are without power at this hour. most of it due to con ed shutdowns. bringing me more information on the phone is steve coleman from the port authority of new york. good morning. the point being can you give us an update on the holland tunnel which we understood recently was partially shut down? >> sure. we have the north tube of the holland tunnel currently shut down. that's the tube that goes from new york to new jersey. we still that have south tube which goes from new jersey to new york open. we're strongly advising anyone
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to go to the holland tunnel to die stroert the lincoln tunnel which is still fully opened. >> i was not aware it broke down that way. north tunnel is new york to new jersey which means that's all shut off. no way to incorporate two way traffic at all. i know sometimes you can do that. you can split up lanes with cones and the like but that's not plan right now with the port authority? >> that's not the plan. rather have people use the lincoln tunnel. lincoln tunnel is open and gives people safe passage from new york into new jersey. >> steve, can you tell me to what you can attribute this flooding. i'll tell you, when you go in these tunnels you know you have these weird sort of fascinating dreams about what would happen if the tunnels had water coming into them from the river. is this kind of flooding merely from the overflow coming in from either end? is that what is it or literally from cracks that are inside the tunnel? >> no. it is not from cracks in the tunnel. it's primarily due to the inches
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of rain that have fallen on both sides of that tunnel, both in lower manhattan and in jersey city on the other side and that water getting into the tunnel, starts to accumulate over a period of time and you end up with an impassable roadway. >> steve, how do you go about exte extricating that water? >> we havepumping system. >> any guess to when the holland tunnel north tube will re-open? >> no guess at this point in time. i would encourage anybody looking to get from new york to new jersey to go to the lincoln tunnel or closer for them up to the george washington bridge which still has the upper level fully open. >> i know the lower level was closed due to the wind earlier. do you know what the threshold is for that clo our? >> generally around 35 miles per hour. so that is still closed.
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obviously we'll watch the weather conditions. those weather conditions improve we'll do the best we can. >> okay. >> having said that we're seeing minimal traffic out there that anybody who has to be out and is traveling, you know, will have no problem getting up over the upper level of the bridge. >> steve coleman with an update. let's go right now to the weather channel's jim cantore. he's always riding things out in the worst of it. he's in battery park city where he's been keeping an eye on things like flooding. jim what is it like there now? >> reporte jim cantore, it's alex witt. can you hear me? >> reporter: alex, i can. but i was told to step out of the shot. i'm just going take the bull by the horns and step back into the shot. >> we love that. >> reporter: let's talk about this. yeah. what's going on, behavioral what we've had is exactly what we've been fearing all along.
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the good news is it's with a very weak category 1 hurricane. rather than a strong category 2 hurricane. with a surge about four feet higher than it is now. a couple of blocks downtown boardwalk of battery park we had a foot of water up there sloshing on the boardwalk which is amazing because after being here several times in my life and a couple of days ago when people were roaming that thing it was a beautiful day it was hard to imagine. for folks that haven't ever been anthony boardwalk, it's all concrete and what we did not have -- with what we typically have with storm surge is wave action. no big waves rolling within that water rise. you're not beating up on anything with just that water rise. all that will happen the water basically came up. what's happening is that center is very close to new york city. we would hear from the national
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hurricane center if when he a rare landfall in new york city. heavy drizzle right now. very little wind here in lower manhattan. what we expect is the storm falls apart the wind will pick up. the other thing is now that the wind will change direction that's going to blow the wind, back out of the harbor. water will drop pretty dramatically and go down as it should as the tide recedes. some good news here. a, we only saw the water come up a foot. b, at this point we don't anticipate a super heavy rain for new york city. >> now, jim, the big concern with the flooding there and con ed having to shut down power lines in a preventative way to make sure they wouldn't be active if there was some sort of saltwater coming in and corroding them, you don't think that will happen? you don't think the potential for that kind of flooding still remains? >> reporter: alex, i was
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listening to amy robach talk to matt lauer. matt went to a gentleman from con ed and he was talking about being very highly confident about not shutting down the grid. that's great news. at this point some 7,000 people that would easily be affected by them shutting down that grid. not to mention if it was running when the saltwater got in there it would be a prolonged period of being shut down. right now the confidence is that they are pretty high they won't have to shut that down. there's a big difference, one-foot water rise rather than a four-foot water rise. if it was four feet we would probably see that water coming up on the streets in through here. instead it's a couple of blocks away and just affecting the immediate boardwalk area. a few years an long island flooding. here at the boardwalk along the battery we're hearing of flooding. from this point that's about it. back to you. >> weather channel's jim cantore
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telling it like it is. thank you, jim for that. let's head over to darby, pennsylvania. melissa, good morning to you. it actually was a good morning because i believe your camera operator provided us a beautiful shot of a rainbow that was right over that building there behind you. >> reporter: that's right, alex. it lasted just a minute. it's raining again. it's been raining pretty consistently all morning long. we're not out of woods. you can see this parking lot and this intersection in darby borough completely under water. one of the good things that's happened over the last hour or so, the water at least in this immediate area has gone down quite a bit. right behind the shopping center here and underneath this intersection out in front of me, darby creek, it's famous for flooding. this has been hit very hard, you
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know, several times, especially during hurricane floyd in 1999. it even demolished some house in this borough. we're southwest of philadelphia, by the way. yes. the water has come down a couple of feet at least. if you see over this building, you can see the water line as to where it was when we arrived this morning. just look at 5:00 a.m. so a pretty significant drop in the water levels here. and so far i'm told officials say they fared pretty well, better than expected, much better than during hurricane floyd. there was a mandatory evacuation order in place for flood prone zones in darby area. not all of the residents heeded those warnings. >> very good news. maybe not so much for those folks that have small businesses there but we'll keep abreast of things. thank you so much. let's go to pennsylvania
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over to long island. that's where al roker being approached by fans but al we're going to ask you to talk with us also your fans, of course. i know the weather has been pounding there just relentless with the winds. how is it like right now? >> reporter: well, let's take a look. we'll get a wind reading here. hold on a second. this is 42 -- right about 40 to 42 miles per hour. zipping along. 42 miles per hour. seems to be a fairly strong sustained winds. the good news is that the rain has let up. in fact it's going a bigger problem for places inland than it is here along the coast. but you can see as you look out boy those, those waves look pretty angry. you know, we're probably talking about 20-foot waves working their way towards shore.
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but they are breaking out there, and if you remember just about 30 minutes ago, it was a lot -- there's a lot more water right underneath this boardwalk and very close in and then really piling in and streaming in to that parking lot right across from us. now, we see those waves and they are breaking and they are still just as big probably 20, 25 feet but this guy wearing a cape. you know, your can't have a real hurricane unless there's a guy wearing a cape. >> oh, my. al -- >> reporter: what your going to do. that gives you a little bit of a flavor of the character. it gives you a flavor of the character of long beach here. >> well, okay. we love that. we characters always go at the height of the storm. al, the fact that these waves that your cameraman was showing us. they are pretty. treacherous. you couldn't consider surfing or doing anything silly like that.
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is that because of high tide that crest ad couple of hours ago. that's working in our favor. mother nature is helping a little bit. >> reporter: high tide -- yeah high tide was just about as you said two hours ago. so we're talking about these waves that are just out there and just breaking. i mean they are actually more impressive now than they were a couple of hours ago, but the good news is as you said high tide is gone, and looks like we've survived for the most part the surge here along long beach island, city manager was just with us. a lot of trees down. on this island, as you might notice there are a lot of power lines that are up. unlike a lot of places in the city where the power lines are submerged, because of course on an island there's still a lot of power lines. trees come down and bring those power lines down. there's outage, a lot of flooding the mayor says or city manager says a lot of streets
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are impassable right now and as we mentioned the phenomenon where the ocean meets the bay, the bay is only about a quarter of a mile from the ocean. a couple of places down this way where the two have merged. >> yeah. you know what, al. would you mine walking across that boardwalk and check out that parking lot where we saw as a result of the storm surge and breaking through that berm all the flooding that we're seeing. there were cars which it appeared would not make it. what's the status on those cars? >> reporter: well, they are not doing too badly. there's a couple, the water is reaching up to their tires but for the most part as you can see they are doing okay. maybe a lot of sea foam and they are going to need a good car wash and detailing. but i don't think -- in fact you can't see it but underneath there's a corvette under there. why somebody would leave a corvette beyond me.
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>> is a low-lying corvette. >> reporter: all i can say is a low-lying corvette but it looks like it survived pretty well. they will need a good car wash and detailing but i think they should get through fairly unscathed. >> al roker many thanks from long beach, new york. braving those elements for these many hours. thanks. let's go from al to weather channel's bryan norcross. brian, looking at the camera shot that was provided by al's crew, looking at the ocean,er talked about it being the angriest. it doesn't look like the storm surge has let up at all. >> reporter: it's just beginning to let up but the tide has been going out as you guys were talking about for the last couple of hours. we had the storm pushing in, the tide coming out and then crossing over. the storm came in sooner at high tide that water would have been another foot or two higher and those cars would have been in trouble and we would have had
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that much more water at the battery. everything with this, we really have been lucky here even though we'll see widespread effects from this. but just a foot or two or an hour or two one way or the other. a little bit more organization with the center so that the winds weren't so spread out, more consolidated. it's all these little things that worked in our favor here to keep this at the coastline anyway from what we know although we haven't heard from the whole coastline yet or the jersey shore. there are places we haven't heard from. but from what we know it seems at least moderate at the coastline. although this is bad. this is bad up here and strong winds are moving into hartford, providence and boston and i think that high rise wind thing is still a threat there and this heavy rain is very bad and you've been talking about the heavy rain in pennsylvania and that still is going on all the way down here in washington.
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but, you know, from the meteorologists were committed that we were going to have a hurricane make landfall in new york city for the first time since 1893. and it didn't happen. it was a tropical storm that made landfall in new york city. >> really, brian? because the 8:00 a.m. update still had it technically a hurricane. now i know that there was some bill karins, our colleague he took an exception to that. he said the winds aren't quite hurricane status. national hurricane center said we're calling this a cat 1 hurricane. can't we still go with that. we've ridden a hurricane out in 2011 of hurricane irene in new york city? >> the hurricane center put out a statement and called the landfall in new york city but they called it as a 65 mile-per-hour tropical storm. they get that because they have like i told you earlier, they have been flying airplanes continuously in this and there's more resources on this hurricane
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than any hurricane ever that i've ever heard of. multiple airplanes. >> really? >> the hurricane force winds were in this band here. it was way up from the center. here was the center of here. this band 100 miles or so out to the east that's where they had the hurricane force wind. the definition of a hurricane is a storm system that's a tropical system that has hurricane force winds anywhere in it. if it's one spot out there in the circulation it's still counts to be hurricane. but now the hurricane hunters went out there, flew all around, measured the pressure and couldn't find what the national hurricane center thought qualified as hurricane force winds and using radar, looking at the wind with radar they couldn't find it. so that's why they went ahead and downgraded it. there's another process and that want happenings after the fact and they will go back and look at all the data. sometimes even back upgrade it and sometimes say no bill is right that 8:00 a.m. advisory it was already a tropical storm
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then. and they do that by re-analysis. but, you know, we won't know that for some time after the fact. right now no hurricane landfall in new york. >> got to say as you look at this picture and the bright yellow there and those heavy rains there's still tremendous flooding between here all the way up into canada. how long do you think it will take until irene completely dissipates and isn't a problem any long center. >> it's going to be gone by tomorrow morning all the way out of maine. this down here, and then you don't see anything down there that's wind. still blowing good down there. not as much as it would if it were rain. still blowing good. we saw a good 150 miles south of the storm when it was in maryland, still blowing up in the 60s like gusts at 6 miles per hour back to north carolina. so this is going to be very gusty here. here you can see the circle here. there it is. comes around. kind of just dried out literally
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dry air filtered in to the system here. got sucked up into it and just dried out this bottom part here. what you said is exactly right. not only do we expect flooding up here because remember this was soaked. there was flooding up in burlington and champagne valley, big flood. now they are pouring more water on there. not just that. this is windy too. the winds just recently apartment providence were gusting to 64 miles per hour, 68 ps miles per hour. strong band of wind in here. you have the flood and mifrt in the soil already. you have these winds that are far more than enough to topple trees. we expect just like we've seen in virginia and on down south widespread power outages here, flooding of low-lying areas. it's all going on today. >> absolutely. >> we don't want to forget. >> there's no letting up. no. you have a very good point there
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from weather channel bryan norcross. many thanks for that. let's go over to coney island where things are peter for our colleague peter alexander who has been in the brunt of things. you moved off of the boardwalk. you're down on sand. what's is going on. you must be able to with stand the wind because you wouldn't go near the sand a short wild ago. >> reporter: we feel we're confident we're safe. the water is receding heading back out toward the atlantic right now. this the long island sound, one of the bays here where it was rushing up this direction. what i'm seeing when i get here is how it's redesigned, the beach here alex. the boardwalk is elevated but right now the sand goes right up to it. the staircase, half the stairs are missing right now. this is a sense much what it looks like out here. the wind gusts have subsided over the last hour or so, changing our experience.
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the that was not a good spot to be. appeared be one of the hardest hit spots. we had gusts to 60 miles per hour. i'll go this way. excuse me as i hop over the fence. this is part of stone a, one of those mandatory evacuation order places where about 106,000 people all of coney island was forced to evacuate. this boardwalk as we see officers behind us here, this boardwalk, this iconic, one of the world's famous board walks, a landmark in new york city right now is basically deserted. there's almost nobody here right now. it got a big power wash from mother nature. the concern, obviously, all day was a water event with this city receiving more rain this month than any month in history on record. other crews have been driving through brooklyn. we're hearing reports of heavy flooding around the entire city about 300 trees have been uprooted. we saw about a half-dozen of them so far today. the concern doesn't go away. still getting whipped around a
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little bit. anything loosened up by the first band of this storm now on the back half can get blown off. you have to take this seriously. >> peter, here's the irony. despite you talk about that water blaster that kind of cleaned things off look behind you. you were pelted with sand as has the boardwalk. they are still going have to blast that with water and clean it off again. >> yeah. no, you're right. you were with us all morning long. you should have brought your ski goggles out here. it was blitzing our face like it was being shot out of a cannon. the beach erosion has been so significant. the eastern seaboard losing so much beach to the massive churning. obviously it's not done just yet. police are out here because they are anxious that some people will say it's not so bad any more. we can go out there. this very dangerous. the rip tide and ability to pull you right back out is extremely
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dangerous right now and that's why they are asking people to still heed the warnings. way too early to go back out. we have a lot more of this storm to look at. >> thank you very much. now what is interesting about this day, everyone, is we give you right now, that's a still shot of the martin luther king, jr. memorial there along the tidal basin in washington, d.c. significant today specifically because there's been plans in place to have a fantastic mem ram dedication spearheaded by president obama who was set to address a crowd of any br from a quarter million half a million traveling to washington, d.c. for this event. it's a spectacular granite monument there but, again, as a result of hurricane irene it was unable to be held today. all of the organizers say it's going held at some point in the future, indefinitely right now but they believe either some time next month or in october.
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today was the day as i believe it was the 48th anniversary of martin luther king, jr.'s iconic "i have a dream" speech. take a look at that beautiful memorial in the tidal basin. i'm joined by mayor vincent gray, mayor of washington, d.c. i know it's a wonderful thing to have that memorial. we would have loved to have it dedicated today. with regard to the safety of your citizens there give me an update on how washingtonians have fared? >> first of all, it was the right decision to postpone the dedication. very disappointing to all of us but the most prudent decision was made. i think overall we fared well. the storm could have been a lot worse. be the folks who work for the city have done a great job. we've got power outages, about 32,000 power outages at this stage which our electric company, our power company starting to work on. we got between 40 and 50 trees
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down. we're already out doing that. we're in the assessment phase and we should be able to have a pretty good idea in two or three hours the extent of what needs to be done. we have crews out looking at our schools also to make sure that there was no damage in our schools so we can get our kids back to school hopefully tomorrow morning. >> absolutely. a beautiful look at the capitol. looks like the clouds are being sprinkled with pink. tell me about the flights in and around through dulles and bwi and d.c., reagan national. how much were flights cure tailed in the area and are they going to be up and running any time soon. do you have any idea about that? >> they have been very substantially curtailed as amtrak as well because we have those trains going north which would have been tracking in essence the path of the hurricane. we don't have any estimated time at this stage whenning flights will start again but overall i
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think between florida and here in washington, d.c. we had around 9,000 flights that were cure tailed which is an awful lot and we hope those people were able to take alternative plans and we'll work with the airports to try to get things moving again as quickly as possible. >> i just say, i was notified by amtrak, they were great about notifying people. i was scheduled to come down and cover this wonderful felon with the martin luther king, jr. memorial and they have said up and down the eastern seaboard they closed their operations as you know. so with regard to opening up tomorrow, roadway, do you have concern about flooding or do you think d.c. was spared that? do you think people can get to work tomorrow as scheduled? >> i've been out during the morning hours. really i've seen no flooding that would affect people's ability to move about the city. again, we'll have a full assessment. but i don't know of anything. we've had our crews out. we had our various agencies out. i think the biggest impediment right now we'll be working on that instantaneously and than
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the getting trees out of the roadways. >> yeah. how about any significant injuries, any loss of life to report? was d.c. spared on that front? that's such good news. >> we were spared and thank god nobody, no serious injuries i'm aware of and no loss of life. this has been quite a week for us. we started with school openings on monday and the very next day we had an earthquake. we worked our way through that. so i think this is the week that will go down in history for the district of columbia. >> absolutely. a memorable week indeed. maybe you can catch a break and put your feet up. good luck, sir. thanks so much. all right let's go to nbc meteorologist bill karins that will tell us the updates. bill, i'll tell you, you were right. you defied the national hurricane center at 8:00 a.m. when they said it was a cat 1 you kept down playing that. well done. bravo. >> still had a significant storm
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surge and rain. set up what it is, alex. we watched the observation. we try to pass along the best sfoerm you can make the best decisions. because it was a tropical storm for a while we didn't that have significant power outages that looked like we would in areas of new jersey. still a lot of people without power. i thought most of the state of new jersey didn't have power if it held together as a cat 1 in new england we're still going to have power outages. quarter of million in connecticut. we won't see the historic multimillion population without power because the storm lower the winds, the less number of trees that fall. a lot of people are wondering when the all clear will be. the rain is done for the most part in brooklyn. done in coastal new jersey. done in long island. central park the rain is coming to an end. we may get showers and off and on rain this afternoon, steadier rains are done. we may see breaks of sun as early as 11:00 or noon. wind will be a little bit gusty.
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one other thing. high water is flowing out to sea. we no longer have concerns about surge flooding in the new york harbor or right along the jersey shore hopefully soon we'll eliminate areas like long island as winds will shift a little bit as the storm heads northward up into new york state over westchester and along the new york-connecticut border. all the concerns we hatch now is with this massive amount of rain from the capital drirkt, albany, up 0 through the catskills to the adirondack's, tuberculosber white and green mountains. as far as the storm surge on the southeast coast until noon we have high water. we should have peaked in many areas especially on long island but watching areas like providence, new port, new london. so we still got a couple of hours to get past that. the winds are definitely weaker on the back side. even though in new york city the storm is going past we have a
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gust in philly at 37. atlantic city 35. so i think, alex, the bottom line is even though the sun may come out, we'll still have some strong gusty within. i wouldn't plain a park with a lot of big trees. give it to at least noon in those areas until you start going outside and getting back to business. >> okay. bill karins thank you very much for that update. we'll check in with you shortly. tragically one person has died in maryland as a result of rooep. a woman was killed in queen's ann county. maryland's emergency management agency said more than 78,000 businesses and homes head without power. let's head back to tom costello. tom i under you have a bit of an update on residents. are people back in their homes? >> reporter: they are being allowed back in as of 9:00 business owners and residents were being allowed in.
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they will completely open ocean city to the entire public as of noon today. also they are saying they got about 12 inches of rain in total is what they expect. very little damage. they only had one case -- now keep in mind this is a big tourist stretch on the beach. a lot of people have their own private second homes here. lots hoff tells as you can expect. lots of restaurants. and massive evacuation, 200,000 people or so and the police report one, one case of what appears to be a case of looting or burglary. that's remarkable. i mean the crime rate in this city dropped through the floor when the whole place evacuated. one burglary or looting case in the last 36 hours. they brought the electricity back up in many areas that had lost it and also the sewage system which they took off line last night came back up at 5:00. ocean city along the delmarva peninsula, i would say pretty much the entire delmarva is
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looking pretty good right now. we have rain coming in, wind coming in. but it's not the kind of storm that we were battling 1 hours ago or so, and from the official emergency management people this area has really weathered this extremely well. i talked to family back in washington, d.c. it was a horrendous windstorm as mayor was suggesting, some downed trees but thankfully that's about it. i think in total, in the entire maryland mid-atlantic range we're talk being at the worst of about 350,000 people without power but like i said that's coming back on as well. >> tom, let's see, you're wearing your rain coat still. is that just because you haven't bothered to take it off or is there rain still coming down. >> reporter: it's raining. i know. it's raining. at 6:00 in morning i was a wishful thinker. i came out here with my shorts on. casual wind breaker. it was kind of sunny.
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unfortunately, you know, it didn't last. we're back to rain. enough rain that i need to put on the full giddyup as it were. >> that's all right. you're riding out the rain. tom costello, many thanks for that. let's get the latest situation in new york. we'll get some cnbc miss bob pisani. looks like you're near ground zero and the construction. what's it like there? >> reporter: that's right, alex. in fact here it is. here's the world trade center. the cranes of the world trade center. this was a major issue down here for a couple of days people make being sure these cranes are secured and so far i've been watching it for 24 hours. they look pretty secure from here. this crane right in front of me was magnitude taller. essentially broken it down. the other big issue was debris flying around. officials make being sure everything was secure. let's take a look at the freedom
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tower which is coming up right behind me, 70 stories already. the top areas you can't see, it's concealed by the fog but that's exposed. even at 80 mile-per-hour winds which you can get up there in this kind of a situation, even a nail could be dangerous. people trying to make sure virtually everything is secure. i've been here 24 hours. i haven't seen any debris flying around. doesn't mean there isn't problem with flooding. here's battery park. goldman sachs is right there. there's some flooding out in front by the river. of course the big issue here alex for everybody down here is wall street going to be open tomorrow? that decision has not quite been made alex. the person who probably will make that is mary shapiro, head of the fcc in washington. there are conference calls going on with the big brokerage firms. interact being with the s.e.c. whether or not they should pop it's more comply indicated than
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just saying can we detonate few guys at the new york stock exchange and can we open the system. you got to get everybody who is in the business working. goldman sachs is in evacuation zone right now. will they open is the big question. >> okay. bob pisani giving us a comprehensive wrap. thank you from ground zero. well joining me right now, we have new jersey governor chris christie who has weathered through this storm. governor, a very good morning. let's talk about how good it is in new jersey. where do sthangsd? -- where do things stand? >> the storm is almost passing out of new jersey. the northern half of our state is covered now still by the storm. but we're about half a million people who have lost power and that number is growing a little bit. about 15,000 people in 45 different shelters. 250 roads are subject to closure. but, we're able to move a
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million people off the jersey shore in 24 hours without incident and i think that that helped us present significant loss of life along the shore line. so, so far we're cautiously optimistic about the way things are at the shore. we're going in to make an assessment. what we're concerned about is inland flooding and that flooding could be record flooding in new jersey because of all the rain and the fact that we've had one of the wettest augusts on record in new jersey before hurricane irene. >> i know it's hard with this storm drain systems and they are being put to full capacity use. what part of new jersey do you worry about most? is it along the coast or along the rivers which make yours such a beautiful state? >> alex, on the flooding side i think now we're much more concerned about the inland flooding than the coastal flooding. i think that we've moved past -- we may have some additional at high tide later today some additional issues with coastal
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flooding. but the initial reports i'm getting is that things on the coast are better than we hoped they would be or thought they would be. so that's good. the inland flooding, our rivers are swelling over their banks now and we're already experiencing flooding in the somerset county area and up north in the passaic river as well. the delaware river while it will reach major flood stage will be something that we should be able to manage. some need for some evacuation on the delaware river. apartment least our projections say while at a major flood stage hopefully with some limited evacuations we can manage. >> what about folks who have extensive damage, property damage and the like to their homes. what do they do now? they got to get -- can they appeal to the new jersey state and federal government for help?
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>> sure. you know president obama at our request signed a pre-landing declaration of emergency on the federal side to match the state of emergency that i've declared as governor. that's going to mean that want fema is going to be here with resources both in terms of helping folks through the immediate crisis and then the rebuilding phase as well. you know, we're going to be working closely with the federal government on those issues. for people locally they work with their local and county office was of emergency management. that's the first place to go to. >> i understand, sir, what you got wasn't that, i guess an unprecedented thing that you actually had this matching document signed as a precursor to a storm. you don't assess things in the wake of the daniel, right? that was unique to new jersey? >> well, i don't know if it was unique to new jersey. i think a few other states got it. it is really this storm was so
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certain in terms of its track, and so predictable in terms of what it was going to do that i think that what the states and the federal government decided jointly there's no reason to wait. we know there will be a state of emergency that exists and this allows fema resources to flow to the states and at the state level i signed it before the storm hit as well. that want allowed me to mobilize the national guard. we have over 2,000 citizen soldiers and airmen would who are deployed now across the state helping with search-and-rescue and helping to man shelters and do other tasks that we need have done to get things back to normal. >> new jersey governor chris christie. thanks for spending part of your money with us here on msnbc. good luck, sir. >> alex thanks. let everybody in new jersey stay home so they can stay safe. >> let's go nbc meteorologist kaurns cairns and take a look at new jersey. you heard the governor talking, bill about the concerns about the central part of the state.
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not so much about the concerns of the shore line. >> zero. >> zero concerns. we'll move on. inland, the rivers and just this overly saturated water. where does that stand for new jersey? >> moving on to the next step. we're getting reports of catastrophic flooding in some areas. the delaware river they are doing evacuation of towns. delaware river all that water be collect down in the northern portion of the map from the catskills and snakes its way down along into border of pennsylvania and new jersey. all along there we're expect being major flooding. now i was just looking for the new hope area, one of the bigger populated area, they are expecting seventh all time highest levels. not all-time record flooding but major flooding and top seven in the history goes back about 100 years. still a very significant event. upstream here is where they are doing most of the evacuations right now. that water will crest in the new
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hope area about 9:00 a.m. tomorrow until about 9:00 p.m. so that water is quickly rising. all the officials there are trying to get the people out of harm's way because the water is rise sewing rapidly. there are evacuations taking place opinion people are leaving their homes that didn't think they would. they will be out of their homes for two or three days at most. the good thing about these water levels yes they will flood homes but a quick crest and then the water will come back down pretty quickly. not like it will be around for three or four weeks. the water will go up and then down. there's also, you know, nationally people heard of the delaware river. closer to home because we live in this area we know about the passaic river, a lot of smaller rivers are located squiggly in here as they feed down from the hills in northern new jersey. >> can we get a radar up.
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i want to see where irene stands in regard to the state of new jersey since we're talking specifically about that. >> this is a close up radar. you can see that the back edge of the rain is gone. it's exiting. we may get a little additional rain. all the heavy stuff is done. now we'll get updated predictions. part of meteorology is i h hydrology. now they know how much rainfall is falling, four to eight inches. now those who work in those government offices will make the updated river forecast based on how much rain has fallen. >> is there a concern some of these rivers may yet reach higher levels or because the rain is done they are done? they can still have a surge or not? >> no. no more surges, rivers anything like that. we'll watch the rivers cresting in the next 24 hours but the heaviest rains are over with. here's a wider image. we have rains back here in
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pennsylvania. these are lighter rains. they will have to wrap through new york city and also heading up into areas where we're seeing the flooding on the delaware. that may only give a quarter to half an inch. rainfall fell last night that's now in new england that's going to cause the river flooding. as the storm goes northward now we're talking about okay we know we'll have horrible flooding in new jersey and delaware. we'll have horrible in the berkshires and upper vermont and new hampshire. we'll have what we call major rivers and minor rivers, then streams and creeks. those are the problems, the smaller rivers and creeks. >> bill karins, thank you so much for that. we're going to stay on top of the story about the flooding in the state of new jersey as well as the state of new york. we have crews fanning out. >> alex, let me point out, if there's people on the delaware river, send us your imaging, so
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we can tell the stories. >> you can send us tweets, also against i-87 got a mudsideline on the new york stay freeway, but in the meantime let's go to massachusetts, where ron allen is standing by. he's in new bedford. oh what a difference a day make for us, rowan. you had people leaving the mar that martha's vineyard area. >> we can send bill karins this image. can you say perfect storm, the movie? look at the fishes ships in the harbor. that's all that comes to minds. as you know it's moving up the coast in slow motion, in a way. it just started to rain here in the past couple hours.
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now, this is new bedford harbor, one of the safest on the east coast. that's why all these ships are he and have been here for the past couple days. about a half mile out is where the ocean starts and there's a huge hurricane dike barrier there to protect this harbor, but even though the harbor is protected, we're still getting quite a bit of chop, and every once in a while we get a pray of water. there have been boats -- the same is true -- there's another dike, another area of protection. there are only two bridges that attach the cape to -- if the winds get up to 60 miles or,
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they will close those bridges down. we still are concerned about inland massachusetts, and inland connecticut, for ma theater, and inland rhode island. the expectation is that the storm is going to cause more damage on the west side than on the east side. heavy rains is the prediction, and so cities inland in that direction one that comes to mind is springfield, massachusetts. they're concerned about what happens when a hurricane hits is it may spawn more tornadoes. they're still recovering, and it's weakened and vulnerable along with others around the country. it's only going to get worse, alex? >> you're getting what so many people got south of you. hunker down, ron allen, thank you for that. joining me on the phone is cory booker, the mayor of --
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good morning, mr. mayor. >> we've seen a tremendous amount of flooding. we've had to pull on the zodiac boats and recent attitude ten people. so we've asking people to understand that high water obscure a live power line. there are open manhole covers that have been swept away where you might hit toss hazards. this is a time to stay off the streets and let our crews address the issues. we've got a number of areas in our city dealing with blackouts right now. i'm hoping people won't be looking outside and thinks it's not so bad, i'm going to go out. that's not the thing to do. >> same with your colleagues in hoboken. officials have said the same
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thing. the power lines can electrify those puddles. if there's any debris around them, is that good advice? >> that's great advice. if you go outside you're inviting danger. debris is still falling, loose branches, and again those power lines down all over our city. it's a dangerous thing to do. this is a great day to stay inside, take the day to rest. less us do the emergency work, and keep monitoring the news. you guys are doing a good job of alerting people. >> how about any evacuation orders? do people listen when they were told to stay out of harm's way? >> you know, unfortunately not. we've had a lot of homeless people we had to move into -- they have gone 41 -- they've not
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had to leave their homes, most of the people were being proactive safe places for people to stay, but again when you're in our shelters or at home, this is a day to be cautious, stay home safe and secure. >> it's still a day of a lot of work and cleanup for you. mayor booker, thank you so much for joining us. >> thanks for your vigilance and reporting. >> absolutely. happy to do it. we're approaching the top of the hour. all eyes are still focused on new york city, as where he see times square, where we are told by our meteorologist that the brunt of hurricane irene has passed, now been downgraded to a tropical storm, but that doesn't mean there's not a mess to clean up, still winds to deal with, as you look at tropical storm
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irene, everything in the yellow in particular still at risk for flooding. stay with us for our extended coverage. have i got a surprise for you! [ barks ] yeah, it's new beneful healthy fiesta. gotta love the protein for muscles-- whoo-hoo! and omega-rich nutrition for that shiny coat. ever think healthy could taste so good? [ woman announcing ] new beneful healthy fiesta. they can end up with shaving irritation. ♪ get gillette irritation defense shave gel and gillette fusion proglide razor to help defend against five signs of shaving irritation. ♪ try gillette fusion proglide and the irritation defense line. help defend your skin. ♪ everyone has been waiting for -- the dodge durango versus the ford explorer. two titans of the s.u.v. world.
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