A new level of snow

The view from the Empire State Building is of Manhattan’s snow-covered rooftops.

The MTA has been so clobbered by storms this winter that it announced a new emergency status yesterday for dealing with the nonstop white stuff: Level 5.

In blizzard conditions where the snowfall nears 13 inches, the MTA will declare a Level 5 emergency, which means parts of or entire lines will be shut down as train switches and signals freeze and heavy winds blow snow onto the tracks. The preventative move would prevent trains or buses from getting stuck.

“It’s planning for extreme storms in which the suspension of some services may be required,” MTA Chairman Jay Walder explained. “But in general we would like to keep the trains moving, because that’s actually the best way to keep tracks clear.”

For years, the highest alert system the MTA used was Level 4, but the Dec. 26 blizzard forced the MTA to rethink its emergency preparedness.

Lines on open tracks, such as the B in southern Brooklyn, are the most at risk to close in heavy snow.

But not everyone agreed the MTA should be so quick to close entire lines.

“Limited service is a last resort,” said MTA Board member Ira Greenberg. “When people can’t get to work, it’s a severe impact on employers.”

Sledding spots

Check out these spots for some of the best sledding in the city:

Manhattan:
» Central Park’s Pilgrim Hill, 72nd Street entrance at Fifth Avenue
» Inwood Hill Park near Dyckman Street

Brooklyn:
» Prospect Park, near Ninth Street entrance
» Fort Greene Park, DeKalb Avenue and Washington Park

Queens:
» Forest Park, Forest Park Drive and 79th Street
» Juniper Valley Park, Juniper Boulevard and Lutheran Avenue

Bronx:
» Ewan Park, 231st Street and Riverdale Avenue
» Crotona Park, Fulton Avenue and 172nd Street

Staten Island:
» Clove Lakes Park, Martling and Slosson avenues
» Silver Lake Park’s notorious Dead Man’s Hill


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
International

Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattles Mexico

A powerful earthquake struck Mexico Friday, shaking buildings and sending people running into the street, although there were no reports of major damage.

Local

Leech therapy: Bloodsuckers in Brooklyn

The Old-World practice of leech therapy makes a comeback in New York.

News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

International

Jews in eastern Ukraine ordered to register, Kerry…

Secretary of State John Kerry condemned reports that Jews in eastern Ukraine had been ordered to register with the authorities "or suffer the consequences."

The Word

Kate Middleton made fun of Prince William's bald…

Kate Middleton and Prince William are in Sydney, Australia, right now, and it sounds like that brash Aussie sense of humor might be rubbing off.

The Word

Is Tom Cruise dating Laura Prepon?

"Mission: Impossible" star Cruise is said to be dating Laura Prepon, star of "Orange is the New Black."

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

Movies

Review: 'Transcendence' is not stupid but sometimes lacks…

The cyberthriller "Transcendence" explores artificial intelligence, nanotechnology and other ethical quandaries, but has too much ambition, if anything.

NBA

Carmelo Anthony agonizing over Knicks future as season…

There’s still the cloud hanging over the franchise’s head as to the pending free-agent status of All-Star forward Carmelo Anthony.

NFL

Jets host players with eye toward NFL Draft

The Jets hosted a number of NFL Draft hopefuls for workouts on Thursday, with an eye toward some under-the-radar players.

NFL

Chris Johnson: I wanted to go to 'a…

Now that Chris Johnson is a Jet, the team has to figure out if one of the most explosive players in the NFL over the last half decade has anything…

NHL

Rangers' speed versus Flyers' size makes interesting playoff…

Among the myriad aspects that will make this Metropolitan Division semifinal series fascinating will be the battle between the Rangers' speed and the Flyers' size,…

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.

Wellbeing

Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.

Travel

Earth Day travel in the Florida Keys

See why this eco-friendly destination deserves your attention.

Tech

Sorry, Facebook — FarmVille goes mobile with 'Country…

Zynga has released a version of the hit "FarmVille" tailored for smartphones and tablets in the hope of reaping a bumper crop of players.