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

Cossy Orjiakor: I Am Looking For Husband

Highly endowed controversial Nollywood actress, Cossy Orjiakor, has made it known that she is looking for a husband. The actress, who does not see any big ... Full story

OMG!! African Village Where Dead Children Are Made Into Voodoo Dolls (Photos)

Raising twins is never easy but in Benin, an poor nation on the west coast of Africa, hardship means many die during childhood. Now a ... Full story

Burna Boy And Cynthia Morgan Caught Kissing (Photo)

The Nigerian dancehall queen, Cynthia Morgan, has kept her relationship status a secret until recently when rumours linked her with fellow dancehall singer, Burna Boy. The ... Full story

Shocking!! Vigilance Group Uncovers Naked Female Dancers Joint In Asaba

An Asaba-based vigilance group has uncovered a joint where female teenagers dance naked and has arrested the operator of the joint. The joint, located in Asaba, ... Full story

OMG!! Church Of Pentecost Sunday School Teacher Caught Acting Porn In Italy

Church Of Pentecost Sunday School Teacher Caught Acting Porn In Italy ... Full story

Kanye West Announces He Wants To Run For Presidency In 2020

Kanye West says he is running for president in 2020. But could he do it harder, better, faster, stronger than everyone else?  The rapper made his announcement ...

EFCC Sets Up 4 Man Panel To Probe Former Minister Of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has commenced a full investigation into the activities of the immediate past Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, ...

P-Square involved in a ghastly auto crash on their way back from a concert in Ibadan

Peter and Paul Okoye of the popular pop duo, Psquare, on Sunday, escaped death by whiskers in a ghastly auto-crash along the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway. The Sensational ...

Fresh trouble for Goodluck Jonathan and Alison-Madueke

As president Muhammadu Buhari continues his anti-corruption fight, fresh trouble is already brewing up for the Goodluck Jonathan administration, as the probe of the past ...

Nigerian Air Force Plane Crash In Kaduna Leaves Seven Dead

A plane belonging to the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) air crashed Saturday morning at the old Nigeria Defense Academy (NDA) in Kaduna also known as ...

Can You Imagine!! Why I Am Unmarried - Dbanj

Dbanj has revealed why he stalled his plans to get married at 30.The singer who has been linked to several beauties revealed to Saturday Beats… “While ... Full story

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

Rate this article

0

Breaking News

Cristiano Ronaldo Spends £20,000 On Waxwork Of Himself (Photos)

Football superstar Cristiano Ronaldo has spent £20,000 on a waxwork of himself to take pride of place in his Spanish mansion. The Real Madrid player paid ... Full story

Tonto Dikeh Reveals Her Engagement Ring Costs Over 12 Million Naira (Do You Agree?)

For the past few weeks, Nollywood actress, has been trending due to his marriage brouhaha.Just yesterday, her Mr. X, Oladunni Churchill, stormed to her hometown ...

Liz Benson, Shan George, Other Nollywood Actresses Visit New Rivers State Governor (Photos)

It was a filled and joyful sunday service at Obudu Cattle Ranch as Nollywood veteran actresses, Liz Benson, Shan George, actresses Halima Abubakar and ChaCha ...

Top 5 Celebrity Couples 2015

The year is fast coming to an end and there are couples in the industry that have either been seen on the red carpet together ...

Pastor Bakare's First Daughter Weds In London

The first daughter of Pastor Tunde Bakare, Olubunmi walked down the aisle with her heartthrob, Olaoluwa Fabode on Saturday, August 29. A number of popular faces ...

Shocking!! Liverpool 0-3 West Ham

A blistering start by West Ham United at Liverpool culminated in a stunning 3-0 victory on the road for Slaven Bilic’s men. Philipe Coutinho and Mark ... Full story

Heavily Pregnant Mercy Johnson And Hubby Loved Up On Her Birthday (Photos)

A stunning and pregnant Mercy Johnson celebrated her birthday with her husband and kids . She looks amazing! ... Full story

So Touching! Story Of The Childhood Friend Who Made Cristiano Ronaldo Famous

Cristiano Ronaldo has given his old friend and former football teammate, Albert Fantrau a special recognition publicly after recounting how he sacrificed his own football ... Full story

Real Love Comes With A Choice Not A Chance

When all the butterflies have fluttered away and your wedding day becomes a distant memory, you will discover that you’ve married someone who is just ...

Shocking!! She Said I Am Not The Father Of 2 Our Children - James Adedapo

Mr James Adedapo, a retired civil servant has got a nod for his divorce suit against his wife, Oluwatoyin, at the Grade ‘C’ Customary Court ...