Sally the sea lion made a daring escape from her enclosure at the Central Park Zoo in New York City this past Friday. The heavy rains that have been causing chaos and flooding in the city provided the perfect opportunity for Sally to venture out of her pool and explore the area.
Zoo workers closely monitored Sally’s movements as she roamed around the enclosure before eventually returning to the pool to join the zoo’s other two sea lions. One worker, speaking to The New York Times, confirmed that by 3:00 p.m. local time, all the animals were safely back in their enclosures and no staff members were in danger.
The inclement weather that led to Sally’s escape also prompted New York Governor Kathy Hochul to declare a state of emergency due to the torrential rains and resulting flash floods. The city’s subway system, bus services, and roads have been significantly affected, causing chaos and disruptions to daily life. Hochul urged residents to stay at home and avoid unnecessary travel, as flash floods can prove to be deadly.
While no material or human damage has been reported so far, the city is experiencing significant delays and interruptions in transportation services. Subway lines have been suspended, the MetroNorth railway has experienced delays, and buses traveling to New Jersey have also been affected. LaGuardia Airport in Queens has been impacted as well, with one terminal temporarily closed.
Videos shared on social media show flooded streets in Brooklyn, with water reaching halfway up car doors. Buses have been seen with floors filled with water, and subway stations have experienced water seeping from the ceilings.
Despite the unusual escape of Sally the sea lion, the zoo staff ensured the safety of all animals during the heavy rains. With the state of emergency in effect, city agencies are working tirelessly to address the extreme weather conditions and provide necessary resources.
As New York City continues to grapple with the aftermath of the heavy rain and flooding, residents are urged to remain vigilant and take necessary precautions to stay safe amidst the unpredictable weather.