Bloomberg orders evacuations, subway to shut down as New York braces for Irene
NEW York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has taken the unprecedented step of ordering the evacuation of all New Yorkers living in low-lying areas, warning "people might die" unless they heed warnings about Hurricane Irene.
Mr Bloomberg issued the drastic directive after MTA officials revealed a bombshell of their own: The entire mass transit system will be shut down from noon today local time. His decision to evacuate an estimated 270,000 residents was the first time such an order had been issued, according to the New York Post.
"The sun is shining but don't be misled," Mr Bloomberg said of the looming Category 2 hurricane. "There is a very dangerous storm headed in our direction." At least 65 million people across the US East Coast are in the hurricane's projected track, according to the Post.