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Mayor Bill de Blasio declares a state of emergency

by Patrice Wingfield (2020-04-01)

Panicked New Yorkers rushed to stock up on essentials forming long lines and clearing shelves of produce as Mayor Bill de Blasio declared a state of emergency in the city due the coronavirus outbreak. 

He made the decision on Thursday afternoon saying the last 24 hours had been 'very, very sobering' and that the world had been turned 'upside down' in just a day.  

The announcement immediately sparked furious panic shopping from New Yorkers as grocery stores across the city saw chaos and frantic stockpiling with residents fearing the worst. 

De Blasio attempted to calm the panic, asking for a stop in the spread of misinformation and stating that Manhattan would not be quarantined.  

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This picture taken at 7.30pm Thursday in a Whole Foods in Manhattan showed long lines waiting to pay for supplies

The Minskoff Theatre is shuttered Thursday as Broadway goes dark amid the state of emergency in New York

Shoppers wait in a long line snaking through a supermarket to pay for groceries in Brooklyn

Trader Joes' shelves in Manhattan were bare as a state of emergency was declared in New York and shoppers panicked

Scenes from inside a Costco in Queens as hundreds cued up with hope of being able to buy all before the store closes at 9pm

Lines stretched for blocks as New Yorkers rushed to pick up supplies after a state of emergency was declared

Fruit and vegetable aisles were empty as shoppers panicked and rushed to stores amid rumors Manhattan would quarantine

Shelves were emptied of products Thursday evening after the announcement as soup and canned food were purchased

Lines outside Trader Joes in Manhattan went around the block as Mayor de Blasio called for calm from New Yorkers

New Yorkers in Manhattan lined up in grocery stores to stockpile supplies as a state of emergency was announced

'NO, there is NO TRUTH to rumors about Manhattan being quarantined,' he said in a tweet. 

'Whoever is spreading this misinformation, PLEASE STOP NOW!' 

He later added that there is 'no need' to stock up fridges and cabinets. 

'Our supply chain is active and deliveries are rolling in as normal. Shelves will restock,' de Blasio wrote.  

Concerned shoppers revealed that some stores were limiting the number of people allowed inside because of the need for distancing between customers and so lines waiting outside were becoming more extreme. 

'Apparently Trader Joe's is restricting occupancy due to coronavirus, so the line just to get to the door runs all the way down the block and onto the side street,' one Twitter user wrote. In case you beloved this information in addition to you would like to get more info relating to Leave all of your plumbing needs to us! Call Rocksteady Plumbing at 805-237-7625 to schedule immediate service in Paso Robles kindly visit our web site.  

The Whole Foods at Union Square New York had empty shelves by 7.30pm in Thursday but more shoppers still arrived

Meat products were almost completely sold out at a Whole Foods in Manhattan by early Thursday evening

Highways in the city were also clear of traffic during rush hour Thursday evening as many residents worked from home and avoided travel. 

Stores empty of produce were pictured Thursday evening as limited numbers of customers were seen rushing for coveted items. Shoppers were slowly being let into stores to grabbed what remained buy space was given to avoid a large influx of people at any one time. 

Aisles of frozen goods remained empty and rows used for vegetables remained empty as early as 6.30pm Thursday just a few hours after the state of emergency was declared. 

Only a few potatoes remained on shelves as of 6.30pm Thursday evening in this New York Trader Joe's 

Salads continued to remain in stock as customers bought out other dry and frozen goods

The frozen aisle remained almost 100 percent empty early Thursday evening with only a few items remaining

Fruit and vegetables were also close to selling out on Thursday as shopping took over the city Thursday evening

Rush hour saw significantly less traffic on New York highways as the state of emergency was declared

It is believed that some stores are limiting the number of customers allowed inside at one time to allow for distancing

Dry foods were quickly snapped up by shoppers as some shared their photos of the chaos that followed the announcement

Shoppers revealed they faced long waits in line even once they were inside the store as waits snaked along street blocks

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The state of emergency allows de Blasio to now activate a range of extreme measures including a curfew, closing down public transport, prohibiting people from being on the streets, rationing and limiting alcohol use.

He has not implemented any of those measures, but the declaration of a state of emergency allows him to at any time. 

There are now 95 confirmed cases in New York City, 45 more than yesterday. Twenty-two of the 95 people currently fighting the virus have been hospitalized. 

The New York City breakdown is as follows; 25 in Manhattan, 24 Brooklyn, 17 in Queens, 10 in the Bronx and five in Staten Island. 

New York's roads and streets became increasingly more deserted on Thursday as Broadway was shut down and all large gatherings were suspended. 

Areas normally flooded with tourists stood silent as panic shopping gripped the city. 

The generally bustling Times Square was empty as increasing numbers of employees worked from home and others sheltered from the outbreak. 

The corner of Central Park in Manhattan in Thursday evening, a part of the city generally bustling with tourists 

Streets remained quiet along Madison Ave on the Upper East Side in New York City as residents kept indoors

The steps of the natural history museum remained unnaturally quiet as tourists avoided the normally crowded area

Mayor Bill de Blasio has declared a state of emergency in the city of New York due the coronavirus outbreak.