Boardwalk underwater after Sandy
Note: The following is a compilation of media reports from throughout the region.
ATLANTIC CITY-The former Hurricane Sandy came ashore at Atlantic City, spewed venom in the form of raging flood waters and high winds, then left, leaving those in the northeast and New England beginning to assess the damage the day after. But “Superstorm Sandy,” as it’s been dubbed, continues her violence, spreading wind, rain and snow across a wide swath of the country.
With the storm having made landfall in New Jersey, the Garden State was the hardest hit, with scenes of flooding a regular occurrenc on television. In a press conference taking place during the morning of Oct. 30, an exhausted-looking Governor Chris Christie shared what he knew with reporters.
“The level of devastation is unbelievable,” he said. “It’s beyond anything I’d ever see. It’s terrible.” He added that specific damage assessment won’t be complete until the next 24 to 48 hours, adding that rescue and recovery operations were underway in Atlantic City. “The only break we caught was that the storm came earlier and more quickly than forecasted,” he said, pointing out that it didn’t come in at high tide.
Another small piece of good news is that the Garden State Parkway opened early on Tuesday to drivers. But balancing that, on the negative side is the PATH rail service between New York and New Jersey, which experienced serious flooding. Christie indicated the rail system wouldn’t be operational any time in the near future adding that “it’ll be at least seven-to-10 days, which means more might be relying on the ferry system to get back and forth to Manhattan.”
In other transportation news, the New York Port Authority reported that the major airports in the area (LaGuardia, JFK, Newark and Teterboro) continue closed, though Stewart International Airport is open. Also open, according to Governor Andrew Cuomo, was all bridges connecting New York City with surrounding areas; the one exception is the Rockaway Bridges. The Holland and Brooklyn Battery tunnels remain closed – again, due to flooding.
Also completely shut down is New York City’s subway system. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg reported during a morning press conference that the subway service could be out for up to five days, with MTA chairman Joseph J. Lhota saying, in a statement, that the organization is starting to assess the extent of the damage. “The New York City subway system is 108 years old, but it has never faced a disaster as devastating as what we experienced last night,” he said, in a statement on the MTA website. “Hurricane Sandy wreaked havoc on our entire transportation system, in every borough and county of the region. The financial markets are preparing to reopen Wednesday, with the major exchanges spending the remainder of today testing systems with member firms.
New York and New Jersey weren’t alone in experiencing Sandy’s wrath. Parts of New England as far north as Maine experienced high winds, rain and storm surge. And, on the flip side, areas such as West Virginia continue to experience heavy snow. Kentucky’s three southeastern counties are also under a winter storm warning through Wednesday. As of midday, Oct. 30, 12 of the state’s 55 counties were under a blizzard warning. Meanwhile, in Chicago, high-wind warnings were in effect, and will continue into Wednesday, while high winds knocked out power in Michigan. All told, close to 8 million people have been without power because of the storm.
Surprisingly, Washington DC, which was at one point in Sandy’s sights, didn’t experience a great deal of the devastation experienced further north. Though power in some areas was knocked out (and though Maryland, Deleware and Virginia suffered from the storm), southern Virginia and the DC area experienced only rain, wind and colder temperatures. The city’s subway system, the Metro, will resume service today and no roads are closed.