The New York City Police Department (NYPD) has released video showing some of the attempts made by officers on September 1 to reach a flooded basement apartment in Woodside, Queens, where three people – a toddler and two adults – died from drowning.
The three victims were identified by local media as a two-year-old boy, a 48-year-old woman, and a 50-year-old man, all of Nepalese origin.
Emergency services responded to numerous calls for help on September 1 as Storm Ida caused devastating flash flooding across New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut, killing dozens of people. At least 11 of those people were found in basements in New York City, the New York Times reported.
The NYPD said officers arrived at the Woodside home following an unconfirmed report of people trapped in a flooded basement. The footage, released on September 5, shows a hallway largely submerged and an NYPD officer diving downwards to try to gain access to the basement apartment.
Police said rising water levels, a locked door, and live electricity forced the officers to put a stop to the efforts and call for help from the fire department.
“Unfortunately when specialized units arrived, they found three people died from drowning,” police said. Credit: NYPD via Storyful