Photos:New York City underwater

30 October 2012 09:28 am - 62     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


Sandy, one of the biggest storms ever to hit the United States, battered the nation's eastern seaboard on Tuesday, swamping New York City streets with record levels of floodwater, blacking out power to millions of people and bringing transportation to a halt through much of the region.

At least 13 people were reported killed in the United States by Sandy, which dropped just below hurricane status before going ashore in New Jersey on Monday, according to officials and media reports. More than 1 million people across a dozen states were under orders to evacuate as the massive system continued to plow westward.

One disaster forecasting company predicted economic losses could ultimately reach $20 billion, only half insured.

The storm also slowed the presidential campaign at a key time ahead of next week's vote and closed U.S. markets for two days.

Sandy, which was especially imposing because of its wide-raging winds, brought a record surge of almost 14 feet to downtown Manhattan, well above the previous record of 10 feet during Hurricane Donna in 1960, the National Weather Service said.

Water poured into the subway system and tunnels that run under the rivers around Manhattan, raising concerns that the world's financial capital could be hobbled for days to come.

"Hitting at high tide, the strongest surge and the strongest winds all hit at the worst possible time," said Jeffrey Tongue, meteorologist for the weather service in Brookhaven, New York.

Hurricane-force winds as high as 90 miles per hour were recorded, he said.

"Hopefully it's a once-in-a-lifetime storm," Tongue said.

Large sections of New York City were in darkness without power and transportation in the metropolitan area was at a standstill.

"In 108 years our employees have never faced a challenge like the one that confronts us now," Metropolitan Transportation Authority Chairman Joseph Lhota said in a statement.

It could take anywhere from 14 hours to four days to get the water out of the flooded subway tunnels, the MTA said.

"The damage has been geographically very widespread throughout the entire subway, bus, LIRR (Long Island Railroad) and Metro North system, MTA spokesman Aaron Donovan said.

The unprecedented flooding was hampering efforts to fight a massive fire in one of the city's barrier island neighborhoods, Breezy Point in the borough Queens, the New York Fire Department said. More than 170 firefighters battled a fire that destroyed more than 50 homes.

Two people were reported dead in New York City - a man in a house hit by a tree and a woman who stepped into an electrified puddle of water. Two other people were killed in suburban Westchester County, north of New York City, and a motor vehicle death in Massachusetts was blamed in part on the bad weather.

Two others were killed in Maryland in storm-related incidents, state authorities said, and deaths also were reported in Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and West Virginia, CNN said.

Toronto police also recorded one death - a woman hit by flying debris.

Some 6.8 million people in several states were left without electrical power by the storm, which crashed ashore late on Monday near the gambling resort of Atlantic City, New Jersey.

In New Jersey, Exelon Corp declared an alert around its Oyster Creek nuclear power plant because of rising waters, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission said. Officials said if waters rose further, they might be forced to use emergency water supplies to cool spent uranium fuel rods.

An alert-level incident, the second-lowest of four action levels, means there's a "potential substantial degradation in the level of safety" at a reactor.

The storm's wind field stretched from South Carolina north to the Canadian border and from West Virginia to a point in the Atlantic Ocean halfway to Bermuda, easily one of the largest ever seen, the National Hurricane Center said.

Heavy snow fell in higher elevations of the Appalachian Mountain inland, and the population centers of Baltimore, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C., were in the slow-moving storm's path.

In New York, a crane partially collapsed and dangled from a 90-story luxury apartment building under construction in midtown Manhattan, and authorities evacuated residents in the area out of fear that high winds would bring the entire rig down.

Much of the city was deserted, as its subways, buses, commuter trains, bridges and airports were closed.

Neighborhoods along the East and Hudson rivers were underwater, as were low-lying streets near Ground Zero, where the World Trade Center once stood.

Power and back-up generators failed at New York University Hospital, forcing patients to be moved elsewhere for care.

In lower Manhattan, firefighters used inflatable orange boats to rescue utility workers stranded for three hours by rising floodwaters inside a power substation.

One of the Con Ed workers pulled from the floodwater, Angelo Amato, said he was part of a crew who had offered to work through the storm.

"This is what happens when you volunteer," he said.

Trees were downed across the region, falling debris closed a major bridge in Boston and floodwater and gusts of wind buffeted coastal towns such as Fairfield, Connecticut, home to many commuters into New York City.

With eight days to go before the election, President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney canceled scheduled campaign events and acted cautiously to avoid coming across as overtly political while millions of people are imperiled.

U.S. stock markets were set to be closed on Tuesday. They closed on Monday for the first time since the attacks of September 11, 2001.

The federal government in Washington was closed and schools were shut up and down the East Coast.

NYSE Euronext said there had been no damage to the New York Stock Exchange headquarters that could impair trading floor operations but it was making contingency plans in case of such damage.

Sandy killed 66 people in the Caribbean last week before pounding U.S. coastal areas. (Reuters)

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  Comments - 62

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  • Hussain Wednesday, 31 October 2012 04:43 AM

    # xintgson: Stupidity knows no bounds.

    Kuhan Tuesday, 30 October 2012 10:13 AM

    ERAN MUST BE HAPPY.........

    xlntgson Tuesday, 30 October 2012 04:57 PM

    Natural disasters are culmination of many unnatural things like homosexuality, NYorkers are heterophobic!

    DD Tuesday, 30 October 2012 05:14 PM

    Looking at some comments I think Sri Lanka is hit by a storm as well. a storm of hatred.

    Abdul Tuesday, 30 October 2012 05:04 PM

    May God protect us all, we all should pray for the people who are encountering this disaster, it could happen to us in no time.

    ASK Tuesday, 30 October 2012 10:20 AM

    You mean Eran Wickramaratne?

    nicky karunarathna Wednesday, 31 October 2012 05:01 AM

    Keep the city and White House under water forever for the world to achieve peace and tranquility. That's the only way this world can see peace, enjoy peace and see real peace prevail!

    pathma Tuesday, 30 October 2012 10:34 AM

    Rain Rain come again.

    peeda mossa Tuesday, 30 October 2012 05:14 PM

    Mother nature hits back at the world's biggest polluter, in no uncertain terms. Maybe Obama will, at least now, have another look at the Kyoto protocol.

    Big Cockaroa Tuesday, 30 October 2012 10:35 AM

    Let's send our troops to help and to show Obama how good we are.

    shan Tuesday, 30 October 2012 05:20 PM

    Allah is the greatest!!!! there is no god but Allah

    mail_guy Tuesday, 30 October 2012 10:34 AM

    But they will recover very fast. On the other hand in Sri Lanka Government blame oppositon for hurricane threat.

    Bush AYYA Tuesday, 30 October 2012 10:45 AM

    Aho Newyork ,nudutu Sihinaya -2012 gan wathura

    Sri Lankan Tuesday, 30 October 2012 10:48 AM

    I watched the entire preparation process on CNN until 3am this morning and those who are full of themselves being Sri Lankans could learn many lessons as to how much commitment government officials from the President right down to the Amublance worker is. Natural disasters can hit any country the difference is how sincere and genuine the leaders of the country are to ensure the well being of its people. I need not say more as to where we are ranked on that score.

    Taxi Driver Tuesday, 30 October 2012 10:49 AM

    Eran , Erak and Endia

    Ali Tuesday, 30 October 2012 11:05 AM

    yeah send our troops to help them..Good talent guys.....Our Troops also will Dissapear with sandy....

    Sareek Tuesday, 30 October 2012 10:56 AM

    What happpend to U.S weapen and missels. There is xxl super power than U.S.

    SakvithiEnglish Wednesday, 31 October 2012 06:06 AM

    Some of the comments sadly show the level of English literacy of the lin-gemba Lankans

    mofaruk Tuesday, 30 October 2012 10:59 AM

    I'm sure SL government will donate some tea to score some pints from the US

    Ranjith Silva Tuesday, 30 October 2012 11:04 AM

    Where-ever the poor get the end beating. Wishing that damages would be minimum and help would come soon to recover all. Materials can be recovered, but not lives.

    LOl Tuesday, 30 October 2012 11:07 AM

    but u can't touch anyone like what you did in Haiti or in north & east

    Ikram Tuesday, 30 October 2012 11:29 AM

    No thanks! Everybody knows what Sri Lankan troops are capable of. Doubt the American people will allow another Channel 4 to happen.

    Rahmathullah M. H. Tuesday, 30 October 2012 11:18 AM

    The mightiest on this planet is being punished by the All-Mighty for all their sins.

    sltk2004 Tuesday, 30 October 2012 11:28 AM

    Even in the floods, the traffic lights are still working...

    kili podi raja Tuesday, 30 October 2012 11:43 AM

    This is time to denote, Garment , gloves.........made in sri Lanka

    justice Tuesday, 30 October 2012 11:45 AM

    The American Government would have done many wrong, but the people are innocent, So there is no need of anyone should be happy except pray for them

    Aney Machang Tuesday, 30 October 2012 11:37 AM

    Rain Rain come again and hit New York City over and over again!

    Pondering Tuesday, 30 October 2012 11:38 AM

    Ha, Pints you say? Blood or Beer?

    Pondering Tuesday, 30 October 2012 11:52 AM

    Who are we to interpret what the Almighty's plans are? Inshallah, let there be no harm to lives.

    Hiru Nika Wednesday, 31 October 2012 01:08 AM

    Allah? who is that?

    mohamed Tuesday, 30 October 2012 12:06 PM

    this is punishe ment of God to big saitan American. if some body say American goverment do lot of mistake but people are innercent am agree but from mistake of American goverment who is suffering the inncercent people of that country let them to suffer this is punishment of god the people of America must suffer what there goverment do to suffer other country people. one thing mind it this is begining wait and see the rest it will be worst ever in history of world.

    Calistus Jayatilleke Tuesday, 30 October 2012 11:56 AM

    Some of the comments sadly show how ungrateful and uncaring some of our people are. One should at least bear in mind the substantial amount of aid we had received in the aftermath of the Tsunami.

    Lobo Tuesday, 30 October 2012 12:09 PM

    It disgusting how people can joke and say nasty things about other peoples suffering. I guess it boils down to lack of breeding, class and intelligence. If you can't say something nice then its best not to say anything.

    Savindra Tuesday, 30 October 2012 12:26 PM

    God will punish this country in many ways,for the things they do for other countries.feel very sorry for the good few people who live in that forsaken land of Christians.

    Lionel W Wednesday, 31 October 2012 01:29 AM


    Grumpy Wednesday, 31 October 2012 01:49 AM

    Agree with you Sriya! Some of the comments show how narrow minded and ungrateful many of our Sri Lankans are. Our memories are short lived and also we forget the teachings of Buddha.

    Lanka Lokkah Tuesday, 30 October 2012 12:37 PM

    If your supposed ''Äll Mighty"'is a Punishing and revengeful one, then he can go take a hike for all we care..Not worth the meaning of the word Almighty..

    Free Thinker Wednesday, 31 October 2012 01:41 AM

    Oh don't talk rubbish and show your ignorance man. When it comes to people like you, silence is bliss.

    Free Thinker Wednesday, 31 October 2012 01:43 AM

    You mean your all mighty? Yeah Of course I can understand his conscience. That fellow even gets angry and cause earthquakes when women show a bit of leg!

    Fabian S Tuesday, 30 October 2012 12:53 PM

    In our country a disaster is seen as an opportunity to swindle the donations received by many. We should stop worrying about America and concentrate in sorting us clean.

    Free Thinker Wednesday, 31 October 2012 01:46 AM

    Are you talking about the same god who helps sunni muslims to blow up shia mosques and vise versa and kill innocent children and women to show how devoted they are?

    Smart Wednesday, 31 October 2012 01:59 AM

    How about setting up a fund...."helping........"

    Sriya Tuesday, 30 October 2012 12:59 PM

    Reading all the comments makes me feel ashamed to be Sri Lankan.

    A natural disaster occurs and all you people do is write sarcastic comments!

    Do any of you stop to think that somewhere people just like yourselves are suffering as a result of this?

    Remember, it wasn't that long ago when SL was affected by the Indian Ocean Tsunami which resulted in 30,000+ deaths. During which many countries came to our assistance including the US!!!

    Just something to think about...

    SISILA Tuesday, 30 October 2012 12:48 PM

    No Need my Friends.... USA citizen doesnt know whats happening in Iraq Afganistan Libiya...etc... COz these USA citzen gloomed to the TV worried about celebrities gozzip whats shown in TV....

    BUT people all around the world know what does USA do.... by invading aother countires....

    If you are living in SL you should be thankful to them for you to have safe journey any part of SL without takeing LTTE permision...

    Smart Wednesday, 31 October 2012 02:07 AM

    Oho.... what about when these things happen in Pakistan, Iran and other muslim countries ?

    Public Abilik Tuesday, 30 October 2012 12:56 PM

    What an ignorant comment. So when the Tsunami hit Sri Lanka, was that god punishing the Buddhists? Please leave god and religions out of nature's catastrophes. Your comment is like blaming the political party in power for a hurricane.

    Nishantha Tuesday, 30 October 2012 12:00 AM

    Newton's 3rd law again proved, "EVER ACTION HAS A REACTION" via DM Android App

    mohamed Wednesday, 31 October 2012 02:09 AM

    Muslim Aagame watinaakama theyrei marunata passe.

    dalu banda Tuesday, 30 October 2012 01:11 PM

    This is a very tragic circumstance , I wish that they will recover soon.

    Minister Tuesday, 30 October 2012 01:28 PM

    Can we propose to Obama to establish a helping New York fund?

    mamath Tuesday, 30 October 2012 01:53 PM

    dispatch Keheliya with a load of Sunlight soap. He will wash away all the dirt (Please provide a ground floor hotel room)

    vaidy Tuesday, 30 October 2012 01:52 PM

    Weather forecast was incredible giving timely warnings and providing facilities for emergency accomodation

    Dinesh Tuesday, 30 October 2012 02:13 PM

    Godd onew boy!! he can be president for ever like ....

    Anjalee Wednesday, 31 October 2012 03:46 AM

    Results of Global warming !!! Let us pray for them !!

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