ABC7 in New York: Travel headache avoided

August 29, 2011 (NEW YORK)

We were in Washington D.C. to cover the dedication of the Martin Luther King, Jr. event when organizers decided to postpone it because of the impending storm.

So, we rented the biggest SUV and headed north to New York City. At the time, experts were calling it a "nightmare scenario" and expecting serious flooding in Lower Manhattan. We drove through the night and ended up in New York City early Saturday morning.

New York City was a ghost town, with much of the lower-lying portions of the island under mandatory evacuation orders.

As the serious winds and rain struck the city, we found Chicagoans hunkering down for the storm.

All in all, by late Sunday it was clear that Irene's worst missed downtown New York City. Some subway tunnels and rail yards flooded, and we found many commuters worried about getting to work Monday morning.

On Monday, we expected a huge travel hassle. Instead, downtown is back to normal and flowing freely. We made it to the airport with relative ease and all outbound flights were on time. This is a huge relief! We expected long lines but ended up breezing through security. It actually seems like there are far fewer people here than usual.

If all goes well, we'll be back in Chicago by Monday evening.

We hope you enjoyed following our crazy trek this weekend on Twitter and the station's Facebook pages. Keep checking there to see what we are up to next.

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