Severe storm stalls LIRR commute

A fast moving storm that brought winds up to 135-mph through New York City stranded hundreds of Long Island Rail Road commuters and left one person dead.

Commuters stuck at Penn Station were forced to find a new way home.

One commuter paid $145 on Thursday evening for a taxi home after trains to Port Washington were pulled from service.

John Teeger arrived at Penn Station on Thursday evening for the 10:50 p.m. train to Port Washington.

“They were advising people to take the 7 subway, and from there find their own way home,” Teeger said.  Instead, he hopped in a cab that cost him an exuberant amount of money to get home.

Teeger was unable to go in to work Friday because downed trees near his home had blocked the roads.

“I can’t go in because I have no power, and a tree came over our street, and has knocked out our area of six homes, where none of us can drive our cars outside,” he said.

Another Port Washington commuter, John Betts, 52, of Manhasset  said he was “lucky” on Friday morning to find a way to work.

Betts said he woke up at 5 a.m. to go to work and didn’t put on the television to get the news because he didn’t want to wake others in the house.

“I knew that the train wasn’t running (last night), but I thought everything was restored this morning,” Betts said.

Once he discovered that trains weren’t running to Port Washington he called his job.

“So I was like ‘oh my god, what am I going to do to get into work’.  So I called my job and asked if they can have a friend pick me up.  And what happened was the bus company helped me out,” Betts said.

He says he is  grateful that his bus company helped him out because he needs the money.

“I could’ve lost today’s pay,” he explained.

Trains to and from  the Port Washington branch stalled Thursday night due to fallen trees on the track, an MTA spokesperson said.

“The Port Washington branch got hit a little bit worse than the rest of the branches with the storm and we needed a little extra time,” he said.

All east bound service at Port Washington were restored at 9:15 a.m. Friday morning.