VIDEO: How To Drain and Repair a Flooded Subway Tunnel

Email a Friend

Hurricane Sandy flooded all eight under-river subway tunnels in New York (nine if you count the G train, which runs under the Newtown Creek). The last one to have been pumped dry is the L train's 14th Street tunnel, which runs under the East River between Manhattan and Queens and cuts through the population-accreting neighborhoods of Williamsburg and Bushwick, Brooklyn.

The MTA has said restoring L service is its highest priority. On Wednesday, it released a video of workers repairing tracks and signals. Watch it below.

Earlier this week, MTA chairman Joe Lhota described for WNYC the process of restoring service on flooded lines. Workers, he said, are “cleaning [signals] by hand, literally. First you had to pump out the water, then you had to wipe down the mud that was left down there, then you had to literally wipe down the rail, and then fix each and every one of the switches by cleaning them and making sure there was no salt to prevent the electric conductivity.”

You can listen to that interview here.

The L train tunnel on the afternoon of Monday, November 5. (Metropolitan Transportation Authority / Patrick Cashin)