WOODSIDE, Queens — Officers desperately tried to get into a Queens basement so they could rescue a trapped family as Ida dumped rain on the region, but their efforts failed and three people — including a toddler — drowned inside.
Video released by the NYPD Sunday shows one officer reaching into the murky water, trying to reach for anything. He then submerges himself into the water and comes back up with what appeared to be a bag of clothes.
Toys were also seen floating in the water.
Authorities had received an unconfirmed report of people in a flooded basement at a Woodside home late Wednesday.
Officers had responded to the building near the corner of 64th Street and Laurel Hill Boulevard around 10 p.m. and were met with rising waters.
Due to the locked doors, rising water levels and live electricity, the officers were forced to call for FDNY assistance, according to the NYPD.
When assistance arrived, however, authorities located a family of three who died from drowning, police said.
According to police, 2-year-old Lobsang Ang, along with his mother, Mingma Sherpa, 48, and father, Ang Lama, 50, were found dead in their basement apartment.
The family’s upstairs neighbor, Deborah Torres, said water rapidly filled her first-floor Queens apartment to her knees as her landlord frantically urged her neighbors below to get out.
But the water was rushing in so strongly that she surmised they weren’t able to open the door to escape.