New York lifts evacuation, but subways still down

Reuters News
Posted: Aug 28, 2011 2:14 PM

NEW YORK (Reuters) - New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg lifted an unprecedented evacuation order on Sunday, allowing 370,000 people to legally return to their homes as of 3 p.m. in low-lying areas of New York after Hurricane Irene slammed the city.

But officials could not yet say when the city's mass transit system would resume service. Transit authorities had shut down the system that moves 8.5 million people each weekday as a precaution and said they needed to assess the damage before determining when the buses and subways could start again.

The Metro North commuter rail serving the suburbs north of the city was the most affected with three lines flooded, MTA Chairman Jay Walder told a news conference at which Bloomberg and other officials assessed the hurricane damage.

(Reporting by Daniel Trotta; Editing by Eric Beech)