U.S Northeast cleans up from Superstorm Sandy, death toll rises

// News | General | U.S Northeast cleans up from Superstorm Sandy, death toll rises
Email to a friend Plain text Print version // Font size: Decrease font Enlarge font

New Yorkers took to the streets on Sunday to reinforce recovery from Super-storm Sandy, volunteering to help clean up devastated neighbourhoods.

The cleanup is to use an annual Veterans Day parade to collect donations for victims still struggling without homes or electricity, Reuters reports.

Police raised the storm-related fatality toll in New York City to 43, adding the death of a 77-year-old retired custodian who was found paralysed last week at the bottom of the steps of his apartment building in Rockaway, Queens, with head injuries.

He died at a hospital on Saturday, they said.

At least 121 people have perished in the storm, which caused an estimated 50 billion dollars in property damage and economic losses and ranks as one of the most destructive natural disasters to hit the U.S Northeast.

The Rockaways peninsula of the city’s Queens borough was especially hard hit when Sandy slarmed into the East Coast on Oct. 29, unleashing a record storm surge that flooded low-lying areas and fierce winds that toppled trees and power lines.

Many residents said they felt exhausted.

Priscilla Perez, 30, was climbing up 11 flights of stairs in the dark, carrying clothes, jugs of water supplies and her one year-old daughter to an apartment at the Bay Towers in Rockaway Park.

Helping to carry the load was her 10-year-old son, Elijah, who she said is struggling with the impact of the storm.

“He doesn’t want to eat. He’s never been through anything like this. I tell him when we go to get food, ‘Take a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, take a hot dog,’ but he says no,” she said.

Recovery workers, from volunteers to firefighters, National Park Service workers and thousands of National Guard members, helped clean up in the Queens and the city’s Staten Island borough, also badly damaged, clearing mounds of garbage, sand and debris.

Medical teams went door to door to check on residents in high-rise buildings without power.

U.S Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano paid a visit on Sunday to hundreds of federal recovery workers crammed into the mess hall aboard the T.S. Kennedy, a merchant marine training ship docked on Staten Island to serve as a floating hotel for government employees taking part in the effort.

“Thank you, and thank you, and thank you,’” she told the workers, adding, “I hope you take some pride in what you’re doing.”

Throughout the Eastern seaboard, thousands of homes were destroyed or badly damaged, millions were left without power, and commerce was brought to a virtual standstill in the immediate aftermath of the storm.

The misery was compounded by an unseasonably early winter storm, or “Nor’easter” that lashed the region on Wednesday with more heavy winds, along with rain, sleet and snow.

As many as 8.6 million utility customers lost electricity at some point in the midst of the back-to-back storms.

On Sunday, nearly two weeks after Hurricane Sandy first struck, thousands were still in temporary shelters, while the tally of power outages had dwindled to about 167,000, according to the U.S. Energy Department.

New York accounted for most of the remaining outages, the bulk of them on Long Island.

In what was likely to be a great relief to hundreds of thousands of commuters struggling to get to jobs without mass transit, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie announced that some PATH trains that connect New York and New Jersey would resume service on Monday morning.

However, service at the Hoboken, Exchange Place and World Trade Centre stations was still suspended due to severe flooding and will likely remain so for several weeks, they said.

Officials also announced the limited reopening of the Governor Hugh L. Carey Tunnel, formerly known as the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel, for rush-hour bus service on Monday morning.

The tunnel, which connects Brooklyn with downtown Manhattan, flooded with an estimated 162.8 million litres of water that damaged electrical, lighting, communications, surveillance and ventilation systems, authorities said.

In addition, Amtrak planned to reopen the so-called North Turbe rail tunnel under the Hudson for Amtrak passenger train and New Jersey Transit commuter service on Monday, according to a statement from U.S. Senator Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey.

He said the tunnel, which was shut down immediately following Sandy, was expected to operate at 63 per cent of normal capacity as further work continued.

Organisers of the Veterans Day parade, New York City’s first major post-Sandy event since its annual marathon race was cancelled last weekend, asked spectators lining the parade route to bring winter coats to be donated to storm victims.

The group New York Cares was hoping to collect 50,000 coats by week’s end, part of an annual drive that began two weeks earlier to help Sandy victims.

“What’s wonderful is that veterans came to us and felt in the spirit of service, that is so prevalent among folks in the armed forces, they wanted to make sure the veterans were not only being honoured today but also doing their bit to help,” said Gary Bagley, the group’s executive director.

Lingering power outages tested the patience of many residents who had been living without lights, heat or water for extended periods.

Sharp criticism was levelled in particular at the Long Island Power Authority, or LIPA, which was still trying to restore service to some 62,000 customers.

Speaking on CNN, U.S. Representative, Peter King, who represents the area, called the situation a “disgrace.”

“The LIPA has failed miserably. They are not doing a good job. It really has reached crisis proportions,” he said.

Sunday also marked the third day of gas rationing in New York City, under a system in which cars with odd- and even-numbered licence plates can fill up only on alternate days.

President Barack Obama is to visit hard-hit areas of New York City on Thursday.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg said in a radio address that the city has distributed almost two million meals, 500,000 litres of water and more than 100,000 blankets as well as space heaters, baby supplies and flash-light batteries.

The city was also distributing underwear, winter hats, toilet paper, bleach, soap, toothbrushes, toothpaste and towels.

Bloomberg said the city was sending in teams of contractors and inspectors to help hasten the process of restoring power to thousands of utility customers in Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island who cannot get electricity back until equipment is repaired and tested.

In Staten Island, a fear of crime in the darkened neighbourhoods was evident in signs hanging on many houses that read “Beware of Dog” or “this home is Remington protected.”

In Queens, small cranes scooped up mounds of sand washed ashore by the storm, and firefighters used hoses to power-wash streets.

“We’re taking it one day at a time,’’ said Jim Long, a fire-fighter whose home suffered water damage.

“The water table is pretty high. You clean out some water and come back the next day and there’s more water.”

Tagged : No tags for this article

Headlines Newsview all

Gabriel Omogbo, Nigerian Pastor In Washington D.C. Accused Of Beating, Robbing And Raping Escorts Video

A preacher has been arrested after being accused of beating, robbing and raping escorts in hotels across Washington DC. Gabriel Omogbo of Hyattsville, Maryland, is charged ... Full story

Former President Goodluck Jonathan, Narrowly Escapes Death In Bayelsa

Goodluck Jonathan, the immediate past president of Nigeria, has narrowly escaped the death in Bayelsa state today, November 30. Suspects Some suspected men accused of working for ... Full story

Anonymous Accuses Firm, CloudFlare Of Protecting ISIS From Cyber Attacks

The hacktivists named and shamed the firm as CloudFlare, dubbing them "shameful" on Twitter A trendy Silicon Valley business has been accused of aiding Islamic extremists ... Full story

UPDATES:Synagogue Church of All Nations Building Collapse,Trial Stalled As Pastor TB Joshua And Contractors Refuse To Honor Lagos Court Summons

Lagos State High Court presided by Justice Lawal Akapo has adjourned till 11th of December, the trial of senior pastor and prophet of Synagogue Church ... Full story

Former National Security Adviser Sambo Dasuki Got Jonathan’s Approvals To Collect $2.1bn From NNPC

Sambo Dasuki, former national security adviser, received an extra-budgetary allocation of $2.1 billion from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) within nine months after approvals ... Full story

Tyson Fury The 1lb Premature Baby Who Grew To 6ft 9in And Conquered The World

Rachael Bletchly charts the wild and unpredictable rise of the self-proclaimed Gypsy King and new heavyweight champion of the world He was born three months early ... Full story

Gay Gospel Singer Threatens To Kill Himself, Says He Is Tired Of Broken Hearts

A Kenyan gay gospel musician George Barasa popularly known as Joji Baro took to his Facebook page on November 26, to disclose his intention to ... Full story

Fake Pastors: Pastor Chris Paid Me To Fake A Miracle - Church Member

Popular Nigerian pastor and head of Believers World, Pastor Chris Oyakhilome has yet again been involved in another controversy. This time, the pastor has been accused ... Full story

I Sold Bars Of Soap As Phones - Michael Bisa

The police in Lagos have arrested a 54-year-old man, Michael Bisa, for allegedly selling fake phones to customers in the Oshodi area of the state. PUNCH ... Full story

General Sani Abacha Loot Spent On Roads, Electricity, Others, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala Tells World Bank

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has “received several documents from the World Bank totalling over 700 pages on information on the spending of ... Full story

President Buhari tells Queen Elizabeth II "We need more Commonwealth support against terrorism "

President Muhammadu Buhari has for the establishment of a Commonwealth Committee to oversee the rendering of greater assistance and support to Nigeria and other member-countries ...

Comment on: U.S Northeast cleans up from Superstorm Sandy, death toll rises

Rate this article


Breaking News

My Father Disowned Me Because Of Fela - Dede Mabiaku

One of Nigeria’s most celebrated Afro-beat singer, Dede Mabiaku, who has been able to carve a niche for himself through the artistry he learnt from ...

Government Needs To Invest In Nigerian Entertainment Industry - British High Commissioner To Nigeria

One of Nollywood’s most adored actresses, Omotola Jalade Ekehinde, recently hooked fans up with the British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Paul Artwright, to discuss issues ...

I Slept Off When My Wife Was In Labour - Sound Sultan

Naija Ninja co-owner, Sound Sultan, is so elated that his daughter Zara, just turned six today November 30, 2015 and as a proud father, he ...

The Illusion Of Anonymity In The Digital Age By Tony Ogunlowo

As an internet security consultant I deal with lots of people and companies, on a daily basis, who want to remain anonymous online but can’t ...

Yoruba Boys Not Good For Marriage - Kemi Olunloyo Rants On Twitter

Kemi Olunloyo, the daughter of the former Oyo state, Victor Omololu Olunloyo, made a very controversial statements via her twitter handle. Following the #sugarbelly story trailing ...

Genevieve Nnaji Slays again In An Elegant Dress While Promoting Her New Movie (Photos)

Delectable Nollywood actress cum movie producer, Genevieve Nnaji, has been keeping her fashion game tight. The diva was recently spotted looking all “Right” at the Lagos ...

See How Uche Jombo Celebrated Son's 6 Months Birthday (Photos)

Just like other proud mothers who are always excited to see their children grow, Uche Jombo decided to celebrate her son, Matthew’s sixth month birthday ...

Woman Reportedly Embarrassed D'banj At The Airport For Not Prostrating For Her

According to a recent report, it was more like a melo-drama from the scenes of our home videos when a an angry woman attacked D’banj ...

Jude Okoye Shares Daughter's Cute Photo To Celebrate Her 1 Year Birthday

On July, 2014, P-Square manager and their elder brother, Jude Okoye, tied the knots with MBGN Tourism 2012 model, Ify Umeokeke. During their wedding, the bride ...

AY Comedian Celebrates 7 Years Wedding Anniversary With Sweet Words

Famous Nigerian comedian, AY Makun, is celebrating his 7 year wedding anniversary to his beautiful wife, Mabel. The rib-cracker took to his Instagram page to shower ...