As torrential rains caused flash flooding across New York City, many New Yorkers struggled with flooded streets and subway stations during their morning commutes.
Although New York Governor Kathy Hochul declared a State of Emergency, and Mayor Eric Adams asked New Yorkers to stay home or shelter in place, one woman took to TikTok to show an unnamed New York City teacher wading through the flooded streets, seemingly in an effort to get to work. “Nah, us teachers do NOT get paid enough,” she captioned her video.
Marina, who goes by the username @mssergeyevna on TikTok, filmed her video from a building that is assumed to be a school. In the clip, a man presumed to be her colleague is seen walking through a flooded street as she and others watch from a window above. “This is why teachers don’t get paid enough,” one individual could be heard saying in the clip, as the teacher walking through the flood waved his hand in acknowledgement. “Look at our honourable math teacher,” an individual adds in the background.
Another person, assumed to be a student, could then be heard yelling out at the teacher: “We’re waiting for you! You never wrote me up!”
Since being posted on Friday 29 September, the TikTok has received more than 200,000 views.
In the comments, many viewers have questioned why school was not cancelled as a result of the dangerous flooding, while others applauded the teacher for his dedication.
“They should have cancelled school today,” one person wrote, while another said: “I’m sorry but I feel like a flood should call for a school cancellation right?”
“Give this man an award, raise, and where’s the fund for some supplies, cause damn that’s some dedication,” someone else wrote.
After Gov Hochul issued a State of Emergency, Adams specifically said this is “a time for extreme caution”.
The NYC mayor warned residents: “If you are home, stay home. If you are at work or school, shelter in place for now.” He outlined that transportation has been affected; some subway stations are flooded and some airports are experiencing heavy delays.
Brooklyn is particularly hard hit by rising water, with shocking videos showing streets and subways underwater. Widespread outages and delays were reported on the MTA, the agency that runs the city’s transit system.
The New York area could see an unprecedented amount of rain with between two and five inches having already fallen in some areas since midnight.
Emergency alerts were sent to cellphones in the city at 9.30am local time from the National Weather Service.
“A FLASH FLOOD WARNING is in effect for this area until 12.30pm,” it read. “This is a dangerous and life-threatening situation. Do not attempt to travel unless you are fleeing an area subject to flooding or under an evacuation order.”
A travel advisory was issued by city authorities beginning at 4am on Friday through until 6am on Saturday with the potential for “widespread travel impacts”.
On Friday, the official account for New York City Public Schools announced on X, formerly known as Twitter, that schools were “preparing for safe and orderly dismissal”.
The official account also noted that the “NYCPS shelter-in-place guidance has been lifted, and parents should expect delays in busing as they safely navigate their way home”.
The Independent has contacted Marina and New York City Public Schools for comment.