Transformer Fire

Glenn Schuck/1010 WINS

Dangerous Storms Pound Area; Metro-North Service Suspended During Rush

May 15, 2018 - 7:22 pm

NEW YORK (1010 WINS) -- Some wild weather slammed the area Tuesday afternoon with severe thunderstorms, flooding downpours, damaging wind gusts, and hail.

Tens of thousands of customers across the Tri-State area lost power and the Metro-North Railroad suspended all service on its Harlem, Hudson and New Haven lines during the height of the storm, stranding hundreds of commuters at Grand Central.

Giant chunks of tennis ball-sized hail were reported in southern Columbia County.

Metro-North Updates

Ominous clouds took over the sky as the storms swept into the city just as the afternoon rush began.

Huge, swirling gusts of wind wooshed in about 10 minutes before 5 p.m. knocking down anything in its way in Ho-Ho-Kus, New Jersey. Huge 50-foot-high oaks were wiped out like sticks. A transformer exploded and started a fire, 1010 WINS' Glenn Schuck reported. Dozens of houses were evacuated as a precaution.

On Bedford Avenue in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, a metal construction frame fell from a roof in the wind.

The area's major airports were reporting hourslong delays and warned customers of possible cancellations.

Motorists and anyone outdoors were warned to keep an eye out for rapidly changing weather conditions and urged to seek shelter in a building and not under a tree or canopy during the storm as these are not safe areas during high winds or frequent lightning. If you can hear thunder, you are at risk for being struck by lightning. Never attempt to drive through a flooded roadway. To do so may not only damage your vehicle but may put you and your would-be rescuers at risk.

Tuesday's storms follow a long swath of severe weather that produced damaging winds from central Ohio to eastern Virginia on Monday.

(© 2018 1010 WINS. Accuweather contributed to this report.)