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Hurricane Sandy: Permanent Archive

Transportation, evacuation, safety updates as they happen


Epoch Times Staff
Created: October 28, 2012 Last Updated: December 23, 2012
Related articles: United States » New York City
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The beachfront home (middle) of Bill Guage in the Rockaways was slammed with water and sand during Superstorm Sandy. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

The beachfront home (middle) of Bill Guage in the Rockaways was slammed with water and sand during Superstorm Sandy. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

 

Bill Guage carries a piece of siding and a piece of wood from the front of his house, where a deck was destroyed, to throw into a growing pile in the back, in November. His daughter Jamie helps him. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

Bill Guage carries a piece of siding and a piece of wood from the front of his house, where a deck was destroyed, to throw into a growing pile in the back, in November. His daughter Jamie helps him. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

A house still standing after the left side was completely destroyed in Hurricane Sandy at Union Beach in New Jersey, Nov. 14. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times)

A house still standing after the left side was completely destroyed in Hurricane Sandy at Union Beach in New Jersey, Nov. 14. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times)

Photo Updates Here  Full Blog Below 

New Follow-Up Articles (posted Nov. 21):  Sandy Shines Spotlight on Plight of New York City’s Hunger-Stricken  *  Disaster Relief Programs Boost NYC Small Businesses  *  NYC Sandy Victims Looking for Rent Respite  *  Coast Guard on Front Line in Environmental Clean-Up in NY and NJ  *  Improving NYC’s Infrastructure in Sandy’s Wake  *  NYC Residents Contemplate Another Superstorm  *  Stranded Rockaways Connected to Manhattan by Ferry 

Other Articles: New York Snow Storm Causes Further Inconveniences  *  Mayor Bloomberg Starts Fuel Rationing in NYC  *  New York City Braves Second Storm in Two Weeks  *  Long Lines, Limited Resources in NYC Elections  *  Some NYC Restaurants Benefit in Wake of Sandy  *  Social Media Boosts Hurricane Support Efforts  *  Mortgage Hiatus Follows Sandy  *  Staten Islanders Who Lost Homes Boosted by Volunteers  *  Sandy Spurs Voters, But Many Displaced  *  Post-Sandy Volunteer and Donation Opportunities in New York Area  *  New Yorkers Step Up to Help Those in Need  *  On Brooklyn’s Southern Coast, Sandy’s Devastation Persists  *  Runner Changes Course as NYC Marathon Canceled

Thursday Articles: Decision to Evacuate Not Always Clear Cut for Residents  *  Free Meal Stations Popping Up for Affected New Yorkers  *  A View Inside Flooded Brooklyn Battery Tunnel  *  NY Q&A: How Have You Been Keeping Your Spirits Up in the Aftermath of Hurricane Sandy?  * NYC Subways Begin Running Again  *  Presidential Campaigns Head into Great Unknown

Wednesday Articles: ‘Total Destruction’ in NYC’s South Street Seaport Area  *  Sandy Total Damages Could Reach $100 Billion  *  Obama, Christie Assess New Jersey Damage  *  Communities Gather Around Generators in New York  *  Superstorm Sandy Leaves New York in its Wake  *  54 Dead in Haiti Following Hurricane Sandy

Tuesday Articles: Hurricane Sandy Strikes New York  *  Hurricane Sandy’s Trail of Destruction a Challenge  *  Obama Cancels Wednesday Campaign Stops  *  Sandy Crosses Delaware  *  Massachusetts Dodges Sandy’s Bullet   *  Hurricane Sandy Leaves Torontonians Powerless

Monday Articles: Hurricane Sandy Forces Market Shut Down  *  Coast Guard Searches for Two Missing in Atlantic (UPDATED)  *  Nation’s Capital Battens Down For Second Day of Sandy  *  North Carolina and Maryland Governors Declare Emergencies  *  Hurricane Sandy: FEMA Turns From Planning to Responding  *  President Obama Halts Campaign to Respond to Hurricane Emergency  *  Romney Scraps Campaign Stops Over Hurricane

Prior Coverage: New York City Braces for Hurricane Sandy  *  Hurricane Sandy Aims at New York

Transport Info: 
SUBWAYS:  See MTA’s website.
BUSES: New York City buses are running on regular routes.
FERRIES: East River Ferry running.
Hudson River Ferry running.
Staten Island Ferry running. 
AIRPORTS AND PRIVATE CARS: Pretty much back to normal. 
NEW JERSEY: PATH trains status.

WEBSITES: Gov. Cuomo’s website.  *  NYC.gov website.  *  MTA website

12:30 p.m. Thursday — Live Blog Ceased

Our live updates have now ceased as the clean-up continues. We hope everyone is recovering quickly.

Please check our main site for continued coverage. We will also list new articles at the top of this blog.

Thank you.

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12:24 p.m. Thursday — How to Avoid Fraud Charities

Fake charities and home repair scams often appear after disasters, warns the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

Here are some tips from the FTC on how to differentiate between the genuine and fraud:

  • Donate to charities you know and trust. Be alert for charities that seem to have sprung up overnight.
  • Ask if the caller is a paid fundraiser, who they work for, and what percentage of your donation goes to the charity and to the fundraiser. If you don’t get a clear answer—or if you don’t like the answer you get—consider donating to a different organization.
  • Do not give out personal or financial information—including your credit card or bank account number—unless you know the charity is reputable.
  • Never send cash: you can’t be sure the organization will receive your donation, and you won’t have a record for tax purposes.
  • Check out a charity before you donate. Contact the Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance at www.give.org.

Fraudsters target disaster-affected areas, hoping to cash in on property owners’ insurance settlements and financial relief from the federal government. Home and business owners who need to hire a contractor should:

  • Ask for copies of the contractor’s general liability and worker’s compensation insurance.
  • Check the contractor’s identification and references.
  • Avoid paying more than the minimum in advance.
  • Deal with reputable people in your community.
  • Call local law enforcement and the Better Business Bureau if you suspect a con.

For more information, see Disaster Recovery, Charity Fraud, Charity Checklist, and Charitable Donations: Give or Take

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8:43 a.m. Thursday — Mass Transit Fares are Free Thurs and Fri

All mass transit, including buses, subways, Metro North and Long Island railroads and Access-A-Ride, are free for riders on Nov. 1 and Nov. 2, announced Gov. Andrew Cuomo and MTA Chairman Joseph Lhota.

“We want to get people back to work, but we are asking our customers for patience and understanding as they confront crowding and long lines as we repair our system,” Lhota said in a statement.

An extra hour of commute is expected for Thursday. Most trains are only running local. Trains are expected to run  every 10 minutes, a vast difference from the usual weekday, rush hour, frequency, according to 2nd Avenue Saga.

“Be flexible about your travel times. We have come a long way in a short time to repair the damage from the most devastating event to strike our transportation system,” Lhota said.

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1:06 a.m. Thursday — Private Vehicle Access to Manhattan Limited

Private vehicles must have 3 or more people in the vehicles in order to enter Manhattan via the Brooklyn Bridge, (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Private vehicles must have 3 or more people in the vehicles in order to enter Manhattan via the Brooklyn Bridge, (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Private vehicles must have 3 or more people in the vehicles in order to enter Manhattan via the Brooklyn Bridge, Manhattan Bridge, Williamsburg Bridge, and Ed Koch-Queensboro Bridge.

The limit is for Manhattan-bound vehicles between 6 a.m. and midnight on Thursday, Nov. 1 and Friday, Nov. 2, according to the Department of Transport.

“Exceptions will be provided for buses, authorized emergency vehicles, paratransit, and commercial vehicles during these times and for yellow taxis after 4 p.m.,” the DOT said in a release.
   
The lower level of the Manhattan Bridge will be reserved for two-way bus travel Thursday and Friday and bus-priority lanes will be established on key corridors in Brooklyn and Manhattan, DOT said.

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12:27 a.m. Thursday —  Drinking Fountains Available in Some Areas Without Power

Free drinking fountains are available every day at six Manhattan locations until daily power is restored, the NYC Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) announced. The Water-On-the-Go fountains will serve residents from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. in the following Manhattan and Breezy Point locations:

  • 23rd Street and 8th Avenue
  • 23rd Street and 2nd Avenue
  • 14th Street and 8th Avenue
  • Houston Street and 6th Avenue
  • Canal Street and Centre Street
  • Monroe Street

New York water remains safe to drink, the DEP advised. The department said it has performed more than 3,000 tests on drinking water samples throughout the city since the start of Hurricane Sandy.

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11:49 p.m. Wednesday — Hudson River Ferry Restart

Hudson River ferry service will restart Thursday at 7 a.m. from New Jersey to the World Financial Center, offering commuters an alternative means of travel into and out of Lower Manhattan, the Port Authority announced in a statement.

The first ferries will run between New Jersey and New York from 7 a.m. until 6:30 p.m. Thursday, starting from Paulus Hook, Weehawken and Hoboken North at 14th Street and going to the World Financial Ferry Terminal in Battery Park City.

For further information visit nywaterway.com

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10:13 p.m. Wednesday — ConEd Power Update

Yvette Diaz, who was left without electricity after Hurricane Sandy passed through, washes her hair with water coming out of a fire hydrant on the Lower East Side, New York City, Oct. 31. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

Yvette Diaz, who was left without electricity after Hurricane Sandy passed through, washes her hair with water coming out of a fire hydrant on the Lower East Side, New York City, Oct. 31. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

Con Edison reported about 719,000 customers were without power as of 8 p.m. Wednesday.

Breakdown of customers with no power:
227,000 in Manhattan
113,000 in Queens
  74,000 in Brooklyn
100,000 in Staten Island
  38,000 in Bronx
168,000 Westchester County

Read the full advisory from Con Edison here.

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10:10 p.m. Wednesday — Modified East River Ferry Service Starts Thursday

The East River Ferry will run on two modified routes on Nov. 1.

1. A northern loop making stops at North Williamsburg, Long Island City (Queens), and East 34th Street.

2. A southern loop making stops at North Williamsburg, Brooklyn Bridge Park in DUMBO, and Wall Street/Pier 11.

Northern loop ferries will carry 149 passengers and dock at each of the three stops every 15 minutes. The southern loop ferries will carry 349 passengers arrive at each stop every 30 minutes.

The first ferries will both leave from North Williamsburg, at about 7 a.m., while the last ferries will leave from E. 34th Street and Wall Street/Pier 11 at about 6 p.m.

Hurricane damage has closed ferry stops in Greenpoint and South Williamsburg for the time being. Tickets are only available onboard the ferries for cash only.

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9:59 p.m. Wednesday — Subway Briefing at 10 a.m. Thursday

Gov. Andrew Cuomo and MTA Chief Joseph Lhota will give briefing on subway status at 10 a.m. Thursday morning. Watch live via http://www.governor.ny.gov or follow this blog.

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9:43 p.m. Wednesday — Amtrak NYC Service to Restart Friday

Amtrak will restore service to and from New York City on Friday, Nov. 2.

“Amtrak is continuing to remove water from tunnels in order to make repairs to track, signal and power systems under the Hudson and East rivers and to restore service to and from Penn Station in New York City,” the entity said in a statement.  

Modified service will begin on Friday and schedules will be announced on Thursday. Also on Thursday, service will be restored for other areas in the Northeast, including Boston; New Haven, Conn.; and Newark, N.J.

Visit this site for the full plan.

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9:21 p.m. Wednesday — Nets Home Opener Postponed

The Brooklyn Nets season opener, scheduled for Nov. 1, is being postponed, according to a letter from CEO Brett Yormark to fans.  

“Dear Fans,” the letter says, “Mayor Bloomberg recommended to the NBA this afternoon that after further assessments of the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy, he felt it was in the best interests of New York City for the NBA to postpone the Brooklyn Nets-New York Knicks game scheduled for tomorrow night. As a result, the game has been postponed for a date to be determined.”  

The Nets home opener will now be on Saturday, Nov. 3, at 7:30 p.m., against the Toronto Raptors. Doors open at 5:20 p.m.  

Barclays Center, the Nets new home arena, and the Nets will have a transportation plan in place, including additional bus options for the game, says Tormark.  

“Our hearts go out to everyone affected by Hurricane Sandy,” he said. “We know these are trying times for so many of you and our thoughts are with you.”

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9:13 p.m. Wednesday — Yankees to Donate $500,000 to Relieve Sandy Aftermath

The New York Yankees will donate $500,000 to the American Red Cross to support restoration in the Tri-State area affected by Hurricane Sandy.

 “The damage and destruction to the Tri-State area caused by Hurricane Sandy is daunting, but we have seen the great resiliency of this region before,” said Hal Steinbrenner, New York Yankees managing general partner.

“As a neighbor and community member, the Yankees embrace our role of stepping forward and assisting the American Red Cross, which comes to the aid of so many people through their tireless efforts,” said Steinbrenner.

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7:48 p.m. Wednesday — New York Aquarium in Dire Situation

The New York Aquarium in Coney Island is in an emergency situation and may have to temporarily relocate some animals to other aquariums in the region.  

“Staff have established temporary life support for the aquatic systems, are pumping flood waters out of basements and mechanical areas, and are working to restore filtration and other life support essentials for the exhibit and holding tanks,” said Jim Breheny, executive vice president of the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Zoos and Aquarium, in a statement.  

Jon Forrest Dohlin, director of the WCS New York Aquarium, surveys a sea lion exhibit while walking through flood waters. The Aquarium said Oct.1 it still had't been able to restore power to all exhibits. (Julie Larsen Maher/WCS)

Jon Forrest Dohlin, director of the WCS New York Aquarium, surveys a sea lion exhibit while walking through flood waters. The Aquarium said Oct.1 it still had't been able to restore power to all exhibits. (Julie Larsen Maher/WCS)

More than 300 marine species, including walruses, jellyfish, and sea turtles are contained in the aquarium’s 14 acres.

“We have a short window of time to get these systems re-established. If this cannot be accomplished in this critical period, we will temporarily relocate the collection to other AZA aquariums in the region,” Breheny said.

The aquarium, which is close to the ocean (the order from ocean inland goes beach, boardwalk, aquarium) was struck by a storm surge as the seas “broke over the boardwalk,” Breheny said.

Eighteen staff members stayed at the aquarium during the storm to take care of the animals and keep an eye on the buildings.  

The aquarium will be closed indefinitely.

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7:54 p.m. Wednesday — Beware of Monoxide When Using Portable Generators

Carbon monoxide is the most common poison-related cause of death or hospitalization in the wake of hurricanes, the NYC Department of Health announced Wednesday.

The “silent killer” has no odor, and causes problems when people use generators improperly— such as placing it too close to homes, in garages, or outside bedroom windows.

Health Department tips for using portable generators:

- Carefully follow the manufacturer’s safety instructions for portable generators.
- Never use portable generators indoors, in garages or near open windows.
- Do not siphon gasoline by mouth to fill a generator with fuel.
- Use battery-operated (or battery-backup) carbon monoxide alarms. Be sure to test the batteries.

If you experience sleepiness, dizziness, headaches, confusion, weakness, immediately seek fresh air and call the poison control center (212) POISONS (764-7667), or 911.

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7:37 p.m. Wednesday — Communities Gather Around Generators

Lower East Side communities, still working toward normalcy after Hurricane Sandy, gathered in pockets around generators on Wednesday.

With power still out during the day across Manhattan, spanning from the southern tip to 27th St., businesses hooked up generators and residents whipped out power strips so phones and other devices could be charged.

The tandem bicycle pedaled by teams of two generated enough to power more than a dozen phones. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

The tandem bicycle pedaled by teams of two generated enough to power more than a dozen phones. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

“Everybody needs a phone,” said Eric Baker, who is staying at a friends house on Avenue B.

Baker and dozens of others crowded around a generator and a jumble of snaking power trips, phones, and phone chargers.

Two blocks east another group gathered around a generator—this one powered by a bicycle instead of gas.

The tandem bicycle was pedaled by teams of two for around five minutes each. The electricity surged from the pedals through cords and an adapter. It was good enough to power more than a dozen phones.

“It’s actually pretty cool,” said Janice Amador. “It’s a great workout.”

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7:09 p.m. Wednesday – Businesses Struggling With Flooding and No Power

The large majority of businesses from the southern tip of Manhattan to 27th St. remain closed, mainly due to lack of power, but some because they have been severely damaged by flooding.

The Sea-Horse restaurant in Bowling Green on Oct. 31. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

The Sea-Horse restaurant in Bowling Green on Oct. 31. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

Only one business was seen open during an afternoon bicycle ride from Lower Manhattan to 26th St.—a wine and liquor store near Chinatown that was only accepting cash.

The only other store seen open from 27th St. in a roundabout fashion to Lower Manhattan and back again, was a pizzeria. Many of the staff working to restore heavily damaged restaurants in the South Street Seaport area had ordered from it for lunch.

Most of the businesses west of Sixth Ave. in Midtown were open, including several delis and a Starbucks.

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6:51 p.m. Tuesday — Staten Island Ferry Update

The Staten Island Ferry itself in good shape, but the terminals and electrical components of the docks are badly damaged, said Janette Sadik-Khan, commissioner of the New York City Department of Transportation.

The dock and terminals were submerged under water as Hurricane Sandy passed through Monday night.

“We still have more damage assessment and recovery left at St. George in particular before we will have a firm estimate on when service will resume,” Janette Sadik-Khan said. “We are now working as fast as possible to restore this critical transportation link.”

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5:30 p.m. Wednesday — Senator Avella Worried Over Lack of Gov. Attention to Queens

Many parts of Queens are marred with fallen trees and live wires. Residents have been calling 311, the government hotline for assistance after Sandy, but the chances of getting through have been slim.

People have taken matters into their own hands by clearing up the trees that are blocking roads.

“I find this totally unacceptable,” Senator Avella wrote in a letter to Mayor Bloomberg.

Avella said he is most concerned for the seniors and ill residents who are still without power in Queens.
Residents who call Con Edison have been told that Queens will be the last of the boroughs to have their electricity restored, since it is the smallest area affected.

“I understand that this storm has affected the tri-state area, but the residents of my district and Queens deserve the same resources as Manhattan and Brooklyn,” Avella said.

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5:15 p.m. Wednesday — World Trade Center Update

The World Trade Center site, much of which is still under construction, will recover without impeding the schedule, according to Silverstein Properties. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

The World Trade Center site, much of which is still under construction, will recover without impeding the schedule, according to Silverstein Properties. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

Silverstein Properties, which owns much of the World Trade Center area, gave an update at 5 p.m. of conditions at the  World Trade site. Part of the company’s team inspected the three building sites along the eastern portion of the site.

Here’s the update:

  • All cranes at the site are in working order.
  • No structural damage was sustained at any of Silverstein’s World Trade Center towers, including 4WTC, which topped out in June of this year and remains on schedule to be completed in 2013.
  • The only major issues at present are water and restoration of electrical service. Neither problem is expected to significantly impact the overall construction schedule. The process of pumping water out of B4—the lowest basement level of towers 2, 3 and 4—is already well under way.
  • No harm was detected to Silverstein’s major mechanical systems, including a major electrical room beneath the 2 WTC construction site, which supplies power to each of Silverstein’s towers.
  • There was no significant damage to 7WTC. Once Con Edison is able to restore power, 7WTC will be fully operational.” 

 

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5:00 p.m. Wednesday — South Street Seaport Ravaged

Employees, having cleared an entire restaurant in the South Street Seaport area in Lower Manhattan, work on cleaning what can be salvaged. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

Employees, having cleared an entire restaurant in the South Street Seaport area in Lower Manhattan, work on cleaning what can be salvaged. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

The South Street Seaport area was heavily damaged by Hurricane Sandy. Many restaurants and homes were completely flooded.

“We are nothing,” said Chano Morales, the manager of Meade’s Restaurant, after describing the destructive flooding. Morales came in yesterday to find upside down fridges and fryers, and waterlogged credit card readers.

Sherry Delamarter, owner of the Sea Horse bar, said they suffered at least half a million in damages. “It’s catastrophic,” she said. The water level reached above her bar.

Bill Silver, who lives at 248 Front Street, had his home damaged by the flood. “It’s total destruction,” he said. Silver and his family are currently staying in a hotel.

Hurricane Sandy was the most devastating storm New York has seen in a century.

“I don’t think I’ll see another one in my lifetime,” Silver said. He plans on moving back into his home despite the extensive damage.

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4:53 p.m. Wednesday — DOT Working on Staten Island Ferry

The city’s Department of Transportation is working on the Staten Island Ferry terminals and docks after Superstorm Sandy leveled “considerable damage” to them.

The terminals and docks were submerged during the storm. The electrical components of the docks that move the ramps were, too, were all damaged.

“As we’ve cleaned the terminals around the clock and closely assessed and repaired each slip we’re getting closer to having all the pieces necessary to restore service safely,” said DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan in a statement.

“We still have more damage assessment and recovery left at St. George in particular before we will have a firm estimate on when service will resume, but we hope to make an announcement soon.”

The ferries themselves are ready to resume service, because they were moored during the storm at St. George. The DOT is working as fast as possible “to restore this critical transportation link,” added Sadik-Khan.

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4:00 p.m. Wednesday — Bloomberg Updates on Sandy Recovery

Carpooling Mandate, Schools, Senior Centers, Trick-or-Treating

Mayor Bloomberg held a press conference this afternoon to give an update on New York’s recovery from Hurricane Sandy.

He reiterates federal disaster assistance is available by visiting disasterassistance.gov.

Bloomberg said cars entering Manhattan must be carpooling with a minimum of three people. Police officers will be monitoring the bridges to make sure the mandate is followed.

The consequences for people who ignore the mandate are “worse than getting a ticket,” Bloomberg said. “You’re going to get stopped, you won’t be able to pick up who you need to pick up, and the cars behind you are going to get angry.”

Schools will remain closed for students until Monday. Teachers, however, are required to go to work on Friday. Chancellor Walcott will give a more detailed announcement regarding that later today.

“We are sorry for the parents who are missing work to take care of kids, but the bottom line is lot of schools are damaged don’t have power,” Bloomberg said. “Hopefully on Monday, everything will be back perfect.” Around 200 school buildings were damaged.

Out of the city’s 253 senior centers, 125 will be reopen by Thursday.

Bloomberg announced that he has received more than 10,500 reports of fallen trees, mostly in Queens. This number does not include the number of fallen trees in parks.

“Don’t cut down trees by yourself, leave it to professionals, we’ve lost a lot of lives because of fallen trees,” he said.

The city aims to have the parks and playgrounds opened by the weekend. Bloomberg hopes much of the equipment carried away during the storm can be replaced before the weekend.

Bloomberg confirms that New York’s tap water is safe to drink. “There may be reports from neighboring cities that that’s not the case, but we have tested the water again and again, and added extra chlorine to make sure you can drink it,” he said.

The mayor warns people not to use electric generators or grills indoors since doing so could result in carbon monoxide deaths.

Trick-or-treating has not been officially called off by the government. “That is between you and your neighbors whether trick treat is on,” he said. Bloomberg warns, however, that many areas may not have street lights.

The New York City Marathon will run as planned on Sunday. Bloomberg said that many people have traveled from around the world to participate, and it would be a good economic opportunity to help New York revive. “The city must go on,” he said.

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2:21 p.m. Wednesday — Disaster Relief for Businesses and Nonprofits of All Sizes

Businesses and private nonprofit organizations who suffered economic, or physical, damage after a disaster are eligible for financial assistance from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), according to its website.

“If your business—regardless of size—is located in the declared disaster area, you may apply for a long-term, low-interest loan to repair or replace damaged property,” the SBA website states.

Even small business owners and nonprofit organizations that were lucky enough to escape Hurricane Sandy without property damage, can still apply for a working capital loan from the SBA to alleviate the economic losses caused by the disaster.

More information can be on the SBA website.

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2:08 p.m Wednesday — Limited Subway Service Restored
Thursday Morning: Full List

The MTA is running subways on a limited basis at 6 a.m. Thursday morning, along with shuttle buses over the East River bridges.

People board a bus on Avenue A in New York, Oct. 31. With no subway system running, the city is relying on free buses to transport people. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

People board a bus on Avenue A in New York, Oct. 31. With no subway system running, the city is relying on free buses to transport people. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

Details below:

Subways:

1 trains will operate local between 242nd Street (Bronx) and Times Square-42nd Street.

2 trains will operate between 241st Street (Bronx) and Times Square-42nd Street, with express service between 96th Street and Times Square.

3 trains are suspended.

4 trains will operate in two sections making all local stops:
- Between Woodlawn (Bronx) and Grand Central-42nd Street
- Between Borough Hall and New Lots Avenue

5 trains will operate express in Brooklyn between Atlantic Avenue-Barclays Center and Flatbush Avenue.

6 trains will operate local between Pelham Bay Park and Grand Central-42nd Street.

7 trains are suspended.

42nd Street Shuttle S trains will operate between Times Square and Grand Central.

A trains will operate in two sections making all local stops:
- Between 168th Street (Manhattan) and 34th Street-Penn Station
- Between Jay Street/MetroTech and Lefferts Blvd.

B and C service is suspended.

D trains operate in two sections:
- Between 205th Street (Bronx) and 34th Street-Herald Square making all local stops
- In Brooklyn, between Atlantic Avenue-Barclays Center and Bay Parkway making express stops between Pacific Street and 36th Street

E trains are suspended.

F trains operate in two sections making all local stops:
- Between 179th Street (Queens) and 34th Street-Herald Square
- In Brooklyn, between Jay Street-MetroTech and Avenue X

G trains are suspended.

J trains operate between Jamaica Center and Hewes Street making all local stops.

L trains operate between Broadway Junction and Rockaway Parkway making all local stops.

M trains operate between Myrtle Avenue-Broadway and Metropolitan Avenue.

N trains operate between Ditmars Blvd. (Queens) and 34th Street-Herald Square making all local stops.

Q trains are suspended.

R trains operate in Brooklyn between Jay Street-MetroTech and 95th Street making all local stops.

Both the Franklin Avenue and Rockaway Park S shuttles are suspended.

Shuttle Buses:

All shuttle buses will operate north on 3rd Avenue and south on Lexington Avenue.

1. Between Atlantic Avenue-Barclays Center and 57th Street-Lexington Avenue via the Manhattan Bridge

2. Between Jay Street-MetroTech and 57th Street-Lexington Avenue via the Manhattan Bridge

3. Between Hewes Street and 57th Street-Lexington Avenue via the Williamsburg Bridge

-- Full list courtesy of Manhattan Boro President Scott Stringer

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2:04 p.m. Wednesday — New York Beaches Destroyed

A portion of the Rockaway boardwalk that was lifted off its supports by storm surges and thrown to the side. (Zachary Stieber/Epoch Times Staff)

A portion of the Rockaway boardwalk that was lifted off its supports by storm surges and thrown to the side. (Zachary Stieber/Epoch Times Staff)

With its boardwalk destroyed, Rockaway beach was nearly washed away by Hurricane Sandy, Gov. Andrew Cuomo tweeted.

Jones Beach was over washed by the ocean, along with Gilgo Beach. The Ocean Parkway was over washed and threatened by the dune system.

“Long Beach almost completely washed away, city flooded,” Cuomo tweeted.

Earlier Wednesday, Cuomo said the wind in New York was so strong that “sometimes the [power] cables just snapped by the wind without being hit by anything.”

New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli estimates that the damage from Sandy is in the billions.

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12:51 p.m. Wednesday — Limited LIRR and Metro-North Begin at
2 p.m. Wednesday, MTA Starts Thursday

The MTA announced at a noon briefing that limited Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North Railroad service will begin at 2 p.m today.

Limited subway lines will run on Thursday—14 of the MTA’s 23 lines will run.

The South Ferry subway tracks get pumped on Oct. 30. (Courtesy of MTA)

The South Ferry subway tracks get pumped on Oct. 30. (Courtesy of MTA)

Subway lines on Thursday will be supplemented by a bus shuttle between Downtown Brooklyn and Midtown. There will be no subway service between Midtown and Downtown Brooklyn.

MTA Chairman Joseph Lhota said the subway system north of 42nd St. will have limited service beginning Thursday. Power-related problems will prevent subway service resuming south of 42nd St. for now.

The R, A, C, L, and 7-line tunnels are still flooded.

Lhota said there are 2.3 million regular weekday bus riders. “And we are trying to accommodate 5.5 million subway riders who are trying to ride buses as well today,” he said. “We are thinking of using dedicated lanes for buses.”  

The MTA is working with the city on bus lanes.

MTA Chairman Joseph Lhota walks through Grand Central Terminal shortly after it reopened at 2 p.m. Wednesday. Metro-North train service resumed shortly after 2 p.m. with limited service on the Harlem Line as far as North White Plains. (MTA/Adam Lisberg)

MTA Chairman Joseph Lhota walks through Grand Central Terminal shortly after it reopened at 2 p.m. Wednesday. Metro-North train service resumed shortly after 2 p.m. with limited service on the Harlem Line as far as North White Plains. (MTA/Adam Lisberg)

Metro-North update: Limited Harlem line service will operate every operate every hour.
Starting at 2 p.m., limited service on the Harlem Line between North White Plains and Grand Central. Grand Central Terminal will reopen to the public by 2 p.m. Wednesday.

All Metro-North customers should hold onto their Oct monthly and weekly tickets; they will be valid for travel through Monday, Nov. 5.

LIRR update: Hourly service restored at 2 p.m. Wednesday between Jamaica and Atlantic Terminal, Brooklyn.
LIRR customers can also access bus shuttles from Barclays Center (Atlantic Terminal) to Manhattan.

Three of the 7 flooded tunnels in the East River have been cleared.

Lhota said he was happy with the speed of service recovery. “We are using every possible resource we can to get the system up and running,” he said.

Senator Chuck Schumer said New York is asking for 90 percent federal reimbursement.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said: “Given the frequency of these extreme weather conditions … I think we need to anticipate more of these in the future.”

For more information visit the MTA website.

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12:33 p.m. Wednesday — Helicopter Survey of Damage

This photo was tweeted by Howard Glaser, director of operations for the State of New York and advisor to Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Glaser joined Cuomo and other elected officials in a helicopter to survey the hurricane damage, Wednesday morning. (@HGlaser1)

This photo was tweeted by Howard Glaser, director of operations for the State of New York and advisor to Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Glaser joined Cuomo and other elected officials in a helicopter to survey the hurricane damage, Wednesday morning. (@HGlaser1)

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, along with U.S. Senator Charles Schumer, U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino, MTA Chairman and CEO Joseph Lhota, and other federal and local officials, conducted helicopter surveillance of the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy on Wednesday morning.

They flew over: Breezy Point, Broad Channel, Rockaway Beach/A Train, JFK Airport, Long Beach, Jones Beach, Fire Island, Nassau County, Long Island Sound, Westchester County, Metro-North Hudson Line

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12:04 p.m. Wednesday — Con Edison Currently Repairing Lower Manhattan

Con Edison crews are currently working to restore power in lower Manhattan, Con Edison tweeted. The largest outage clusters will be repaired first, then the smaller ones.

There are over 800 roads still closed. Con Edison reminds New Yorkers to assume all wires are live and stay away.

It will take about four days to restore power for Con Ed customers in Brooklyn and Manhattan that have underground equipment. It will take at least a week to restore power for customers served by overhead power lines, due to fallen trees.

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11:49 a.m. Wednesday — President Obama to Travel to New Jersey

“Today, President Obama travels to NJ to view #Sandy damage, talk to citizens recovering & thank 1st responders,” according to a tweet from the Whitehouse Twitter.

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11:41 a.m. Wednesday — Sign Up to Help With Tech Support

The New York Tech Meetup and Now Work City are looking for tech volunteers to help with hurricane relief, particularly with helping businesses and organizations get technology up and running again.

“For now, we are starting with creating a database so that we have a group of people who have already raised their hands and are ready to go as it becomes more evident which organizations and businesses in the city need help,” they state in a Google Doc.

Sign up here.

In general, any New Yorker who wishes to help rebuild the city after Hurricane Sandy can submit their name, email, address, and borough to nycservice@cityhall.nyc.gov, or visit the Facebook page.

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11:10 a.m. Wednesday — Billions in Economic Damage

New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said he and his staff are assessing the economic damage of Hurricane Sandy to New York.

The impacts of the storm are numerous, he notes in a release and on Twitter. The MTA (subways and commuter rails), “is the lifeblood to our economy, and when that isn’t pumping, the impact will be very significant,” he tweeted.

A member of the cleanup crew removes beach sand that was left on the streets in Long Beach, New York, after Hurricane Sandy passed through, Oct. 30. (Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

A member of the cleanup crew removes beach sand that was left on the streets in Long Beach, New York, after Hurricane Sandy passed through, Oct. 30. (Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

Many small businesses on Long Island can’t open, and many others are telling their employees to stay home. More than 85 percent of Long Island is without power.

“There are real consequences we have yet to determine,” said DiNapoli via Twitter.

The beachfront home (middle) of Bill Guage was slammed with water and sand during Superstorm Sandy. Yet the top floor remains undamaged and livable, and like other homeowners on the Rockaways, Guage plans to continue living in the house. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

The beachfront home (middle) of Bill Guage was slammed with water and sand during Superstorm Sandy. Yet the top floor remains undamaged and livable, and like other homeowners on the Rockaways, Guage plans to continue living in the house. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

While last year’s Tropical Storm Irene cost $1.2 billion for recovery and cleanup alone, DiNapoli said the challenge with Sandy “is that there is no bottom line.”

Estimates of damage from Sandy is in the billions, while loss of business revenue “has been huge,” he said.

“In the days ahead, we will assess and understand its full impact on the city, state and the country,” DiNapoli said in a statement.

“Together, we will rebuild what has been lost and again show our New York strength.”

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10:50 a.m. Wednesday — Intense Water Damage to Subway Stations, Tunnels

Officials from the Metropolitan Transportation Authority are surveying damage to the subway system, with preliminary results showing intense flooding and water damage.

Escalators are under water at the South Ferry subway station on Wednesday morning. (Courtesy of MTA)

Escalators are under water at the South Ferry subway station on Wednesday morning. (Courtesy of MTA)

The Battery Park underpass is totally flooded on Wednesday morning. (Courtesy of MTA)

The Battery Park underpass is totally flooded on Wednesday morning. (Courtesy of MTA)

 

These two pictures show flooding at stations in Lower Manhattan. However, Joseph Lhota, CEO of the MTA, said yesterday that portions of the subway that were not affected much by the storm could re-open as soon as Wednesday.

Lhota will give a more definite timetable later today. We’ll keep you posted.

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9:16 a.m. Wednesday — Meters and Parking Rules Remain Suspended

The Department of Transportation states that street cleaning (Alternate Side Parking) and parking meter rules are suspended citywide on Oct. 31, a continuation of Tuesday’s suspensions.

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8:05 a.m. Wednesday — Volunteer in Sandy Aftermath Clean Up

Any New Yorker who wishes to help rebuild the city after Hurricane Sandy can submit their name, email, address, and borough to nycservice@cityhall.nyc.gov, or visit the Facebook page.

Please report non-emergencies like fallen trees to 311. You can do so online or by texting 311-692.

To qualify for federal disaster relief assistance, the storm’s total effect on city residents and employees must be estimated.

Report damage to your home or business sustained from Sandy here. Be prepared to answer questions about the extent of your property’s damage.

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7:53 a.m. Wednesday — Safety Tips for Trick or Treaters

ConEd has released some safety tips for those celebrating Halloween tonight:

  • Avoid any downed electrical wires or equipment. Treat any wires as live. Avoid any puddles or standing water, which can conduct electricity. More than 5,000 wires fell to Sandy’s wicked ride through our area.
  • Be careful crossing streets, especially at corners with no red lights. Hold on to younger brothers, sisters, and friends when crossing the street. Be sure to look both ways.
  • Carry a flashlight when walking even if the street is lighted, but definitely if Hurricane Sandy snuffed out street lights.
  • Wear a safety vest. They not only are cool but keep little trick or treaters visible to drivers and others.
  • Never go into a stranger’s house. Make sure mom or dad, a guardian, or an older sister or brother, is within sight.
  • Children should always let their parents know where they are going.
  • Children are urged to be careful near Con Edison work sites in their neighborhoods.

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7:41 a.m. Wednesday — Power Update  

The number of New Yorkers who are currently out of power has lowered to 1,953,531, according to a tweet by Governor Cuomo Wednesday morning.

Last night, 2.05 million were without power. Some areas are expected to remain without power for 3-7 days.

For service updates visit the ConEd website.

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7:32 a.m Wednesday — Tunnel, Bridge, and Ferry Openings

The George Washington Bridge, Goethals Bridge, Bayonne Bridge, and Outerbridge Crossing are open according to the Port Authority.

The Lincoln Tunnel remains open.

The Holland Tunnel, however, remains closed until further notice.

Hudson River ferry service restarted at 7 a.m. Wednesday from New Jersey to the World Financial Center.

The first ferries will run between New Jersey and New York from 7 a.m. until 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, starting from Paulus Hook, Weehawken and Hoboken North at 14th Street and going to the World Financial Ferry Terminal in Battery Park City.

For further information visit nywaterway.com.

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7:18 a.m. Wednesday — NYPD Officer Passes Away While Saving Family

Officer Artur Kasprzak, 28, was off-duty when he was saving his family in their Staten Island home during the peak hours of Hurricane Sandy in New York City, according to an NYPD Facebook post. As water was rapidly flooding their basement, Kasprzak helped six adults and a 15-month-old boy escape safely to the attic. Officer Kasprzak then told his loved ones he was going to check the basement again, but never returned.

Officer Kasrpzak was assigned to the 1st Precinct in Manhattan and served the City of New York for six years as a police officer. Previously, he served the Department for one year as an NYPD Cadet, and had been assigned to the 122 Pct. Detective Squad.

“We offer condolences and prayers for Police Officer Kasprzak’s family and all those who are suffering losses as a result of the storm,” NYPD posted on its Facebook page. “Artur will never be forgotten.”

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7:03 a.m Wednesday – Some Airports Open 

Some airlines already began landing planes at the John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) at 10 p.m. Tuesday night to prepare for JFK’s opening Wednesday.

An American Airlines plane is being refueled at JFK Airport in this file photo. (Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

An American Airlines plane is being refueled at JFK Airport in this file photo. (Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

JFK will be open Wednesday at 7:00 a.m., according to the Port Authority. Carriers will provide limited service.

Newark Liberty International also opens today at 7:00 a.m. Its carriers will also be providing limited service.
Stewart International Airport is also open, but running with limited operations.

LaGuardia and Teterboro airports remain closed.

Rail service on AirTrain JFK and AirTrain Newark are still suspended until further notice.

“Passengers are strongly urged to confirm with their individual carriers regarding flight status in the coming days before traveling to the airports,” the Port Authority stated.

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6:57 a.m Wednesday — List of Museums and Exhibits Open Today

Times Square lit up following Hurricane Sandy on Oct. 30. (John Lamparski/Getty Images)

Times Square lit up following Hurricane Sandy on Oct. 30. (John Lamparski/Getty Images)

- Asia Society Museum
- Broadway Theaters (most shows will re-open for matinees beginning Wednesday)
- The Brooklyn Museum
- Discovery Times Square
- Guggenheim Museum
- Madame Tussauds NY
- The MoMA
- New-York Historical Society (pay-what-you-wish admission from 10 a.m to 6p.m to benefit Hurricane Sandy relief)
- Ripley’s Believe It or Not!

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6:40 a.m. Wednesday — Buses Run on Regular Routes

“Buses will run on regular routes tomorrow [Wednesday]. Please be prepared for detours, substantial waits and crowding,” the MTA tweeted. However, detours, “substantial waits,” and crowding are to be expected.

Bus services are fare-free.  

“’By midday, we will be able to discuss a timetable for service restorations,” MTA Chairman Joe Lhota tweeted.

All of the bridges operated by MTA Bridges & Tunnels are open except the Cross Bay Bridge. The Hugh L. Carey and Queens Midtown Tunnels, however, remain closed according to the MTA news release.

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11:39 p.m. Tuesday — Latest Sandy Weather Advisory

Post-Tropical Cyclone Sandy is continuing to weaken over Pennsylvania, having moved north of Pittsburgh since 5 p.m., according to the National Weather Center.

Blizzard warnings remain for the higher parts of the Central Appalachian Mountains.

Sandy could pass over Western New York or Lake Erie early Wednesday and is expected to continue north into Canada.

Read the full weather advisory from the National Weather Center.

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10:35 p.m. Tuesday — New Yorkers Emerge, Crowd Businesses

Across the city, New Yorkers crowded into open businesses on Tuesday.

Small businesses, such as Midtown’s Roastown Coffee, began to attract customers as the rain slowed and stopped, and people began leaving their homes. Many other small business owners told The Epoch Times on Monday that they didn’t plan on closing at all.

Jessica Berk and Steven Edelstein at Duane Reade. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

Jessica Berk and Steven Edelstein at Duane Reade. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

Many of the chains remained closed, but Jessica Berk and Steven Edelstein sat on the floor in a Duane Reade at the corner of 27th St. and 6th Ave., charging their phones. The pair live near Union Square and their power is out.

“We’re hoping to find a movie theater that’s open,” said Berk, who added the pair were also hoping Duane Reade had some board games on hand to occupy their time.

They have friends uptown, they said, but they didn’t see many cabs operating.

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10:10 p.m. Tuesday — Updated Statistics on Power Outages

Latest statistics updated at about 10 p.m. Tuesday.

Power Outages: Total 2.05 million New Yorkers remain without power.

Breakdown:
Central Hudson: 46, 497
Con Edison: 817,385
Long Island Power Authority: 915,101
National Grid: 4,003
NYSEG: 108,602
Orange & Rockland: 145,716
Rochester Gas & Electric: 12,928

Homeowner Michael Russo (R) is comforted by friend Joseph Bono on November 1, 2012 in the Ocean Breeze area of the Staten Island borough of New York City. The first floor of Russo's home was completely flooded by the ocean surge caused by Superstorm Sandy. (John Moore/Getty Images)

Homeowner Michael Russo (R) is comforted by friend Joseph Bono on November 1, 2012 in the Ocean Breeze area of the Staten Island borough of New York City. The first floor of Russo's home was completely flooded by the ocean surge caused by Superstorm Sandy. (John Moore/Getty Images)

Compared with the updated at 2:20 p.m., many of the categories have actually seen an increase in customers affected, including Con Edison increasing from what was then reported as 787,255.

Kevin Burke, CEO of Con Edison, said earlier Tuesday evening that the system was devastated.

“This was the worst storm in ConEd history,” he said.

Meanwhile, Mayor Bloomberg said at 6 p.m. that 6,400 people remain in the 76 evacuation centers citywide. Many of the areas considered Zone A—which was under mandatory evacuation on Sunday and Monday—are damaged extensively, including Manhattan Beach, the Rockaways, and portions of Staten Island.

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10:00 p.m. Tuesday — Study Says 100-Year Surge Flooding Will  Increase in Frequency

A study in the journal Nature published early this year says New York City could encounter 111-year surge flooding every 3 to 20 years. The projection was based on “the combined effects of storm climatology change and a 1 meter [3.3-foot] projected sea-level rise.”

“Struck by many intense hurricanes in recorded history and prehistory, NYC is highly vulnerable to storm surges,” the abstract states.

“We show that the change of storm climatology will probably increase the surge risk for NYC; results based on two GCMs (general circulation models) show the distribution of surge levels shifting to higher values by a magnitude comparable to the projected sea-level rise.”

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9:57 p.m. Tuesday — Evictions Delayed, Other Court Happenings

The New York City Civil Court announced that scheduled evictions will not go ahead on Wednesday or Thursday, after also being postponed on Monday and Tuesday.

The Civil, Housing, and Small Claims Courts were all closed on Monday and Tuesday.

“If you had a Civil, Housing or Small Claims case scheduled for Monday, Oct. 29, or Tuesday, Oct. 30, your case will be given a new date,” states the update. “The Civil Court will mail you the new date.”

And civil courts will be open in the Bronx, Harlem, Kings (Brooklyn), and Queens Counties, operating with a regular schedule. The civil courts in Manhattan and Richmond (Staten Island) will be closed for the time being.

Read the full advisory here.

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9:51 p.m. Tuesday — Quick Subway Update

“By midday tomorrow, we will be able to discuss a timetable for service restorations,” MTA Chairman Joe Lhota tweeted.

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9:45 p.m. Tuesday — 5 Day Forecast

Rain may start again Tuesday night and continue through Thursday, according to a 5-day forecast from The Weather Channel.

The sun should shine on Friday and Saturday, on partly cloudy days with low chances of rain.

In this handout GOES satellite image provided by NASA, Hurricane Sandy, pictured at 8:55 a.m., moves inland across the mid-Atlantic region on Oct. 30, in the Atlantic Ocean. The storm has claimed at least 33 lives in the United States, and has caused massive flooding across much of the Atlantic seaboard. President Barack Obama has declared the situation a 'major disaster' for large areas of the East Coast including New York City. (NASA via Getty Images)

In this handout GOES satellite image provided by NASA, Hurricane Sandy, pictured at 8:55 a.m., moves inland across the mid-Atlantic region on Oct. 30, in the Atlantic Ocean. The storm has claimed at least 33 lives in the United States, and has caused massive flooding across much of the Atlantic seaboard. President Barack Obama has declared the situation a 'major disaster' for large areas of the East Coast including New York City. (NASA via Getty Images)

Chances of rain decrease from a 80 percent likelihood on Tuesday night to 20 percent likelihood on Friday.

Temperatures will hover around the high 40s, according to the forecast.

Meanwhile, the Post-tropical Cyclone Sandy, after moving through the New York metropolitan area yesterday, continues to weaken over Pennsylvania, according to the National Weather Service.

Wind speeds had decreased to 45 miles per hour as of 5 p.m. Tuesday. Some warnings remained in effect as of then, such as storm warnings over portions of the Great Lakes, and blizzard warnings along the higher elevations of the Central Appalachian Mountains.

The center of Sandy was moving northwest across Western Pennsylvania and should continue northward into Canada Tuesday night.

The so-called superstorm brought rain and snow into multiple states, peaking with more than 20 inches of snow in four parts of Maryland and three parts of North Carolina and West Virginia.

Rain also fell hard in multiple states today, especially Maryland.

The next advisory from the National Weather Center is at 11 p.m.

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8:53 p.m. Tuesday — Amtrak Update

Amtrak will start modified service in the Northeast region between Newark, N.J. And southern stations, such as Harrisburg, Penn., and Philadelphia, on Wednesday.

Other trains will run between Boston and Portland, Maine.

Yet like the Metropolitan Transportation Authority—which has multiple flooded subway tunnels—Amtrak is removing water and repairing tracks in its tunnels under the Hudson and East Rivers.

“The amount of water intrusion into the tunnels is unprecedented – as was the storm itself – so a date for restoration of Amtrak service directly to/from New York Penn Station from either the north or south is not available at this time,” says Amtrak in a Facebook update. That means no service between Newark and Boston, no service from Newark to New York City, and no service to the Newark Liberty Airport.

Follow @AmtrakNEC on Twitter and keep up to date with this blog or Amtrak.com/alerts for further updates.

Here’s the rest of the update:

“Also canceled on Wednesday, October 31, is the Empire Service between New York City and Buffalo/Niagara Falls, the Adirondack to and from Montreal, Québec, Canada, and the Ethan Allen Express to and from Rutland, Vt., due to track damage south of Albany-Rensselaer, N.Y.”

Other service plans, full and partial service, for Wednesday, Oct. 31:

  • Crescent (Trains 19 & 20) will operate only between Washington D.C. and New Orleans
  • Cardinal (Train 51) will operate only between Indianapolis and Chicago   
  • Auto Train (Train 52) will operate as schedule as scheduled between Sanford, Fla., and Lorton, Va.   
  • Maple Leaf (Trains 63 & 64) will operate only between Toronto, Ontario, Canada, and Albany-Rensselaer
  • Carolinian (Trains 79 & 80) will operate only between Philadelphia and Charlotte
  • Silver Star (Trains 91 & 92) will only operate between Miami and Jacksonville, Fla.
  • Silver Meteor (Trains 97 & 98) will operate between Washington D.C. and Miami
  • Lake Shore Limited (Trains 448 & 449) will operate normally between Chicago and Boston, with no (Trains 48 & 49) service to points south of Albany-Rensselaer.

  The following trains are also canceled for Wednesday, Oct. 31:

  • Shuttle trains, Springfield, Mass.-New Haven, Conn.
  • Capitol Limited (Trains 29 & 30), Chicago-Washington, D.C.
  • Pennsylvanian (Trains 42 & 43), Pittsburgh-New York City
  • Auto Train (Train 53), Lorton, Va.-Sanford, Fla.
  • Vermonter (Trains 55 & 56), St. Albans, Vt.-Washington, D.C.  
  • Palmetto (Trains 89 & 90), New York-Savannah

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9:00 p.m. Tuesday – Central Park Update

About 250 mature trees have been uprooted or compromised in Central Park, according to the Central Park Conservancy.

“Our staff has not yet been able to survey the park’s interior, so the total number is likely to be higher,” said the organization, which largely manages the park with supplemental help from the city, in a Facebook post. “There has been significant damage to park infrastructure, including benches and fencing.”

The Manhattan skyline is from the Central Park Reservoir the morning after Hurricane Sandy, Oct. 30, in New York City. The storm has claimed at least 33 lives in the United States, and has caused massive flooding across much of the Atlantic seaboard. (Michael Heiman/Getty Images)

The Manhattan skyline is from the Central Park Reservoir the morning after Hurricane Sandy, Oct. 30, in New York City. The storm has claimed at least 33 lives in the United States, and has caused massive flooding across much of the Atlantic seaboard. (Michael Heiman/Getty Images)

Staff at Central Park are working on clearing debris and removing damaged limbs and uprooted trees—New Yorkers are told to stay out of the park for now.

Areas which runners run on during the ING New York City Marathon are being prioritized, as well as areas on the perimeter of the park.

“Today, hanging limbs were removed along Fifth Avenue,” continues the post. “Tomorrow staff will focus on the East Drive and Central Park West, where downed trees are blocking paths.“

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8:44 p.m. Tuesday — New York City Marathon Still Planned

The ING New York City Marathon, is still scheduled for Sunday Nov. 4, but the organization that manages the race didn’t rule out canceling or postponing it.

Mary Wittenberg, president and CEO of The New York Road Runners, which manages the popular event, said the organization “continues to move ahead with its planning and preparation,” in a statement.

“We will keep all options open with regard to making any accommodations and adjustments necessary to race day and race weekend events,” she continued.

Staff in Central Park is working on areas related to the marathon (which goes through parts of the park), announced the Central Park Conservancy.  

More than 315 million people watch the annual race via television, and it has around 700,000 participants.

Check the Road Runners website for more updates.

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8:06 p.m. Tuesday — New York University Cancels Classes For Rest of the Week; Columbia University to Re-open Wednesday

NYU President John Sexton in a letter to students said he met with the university’s deans and directors and they decided to cancel classes for Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. Wednesday classes were already canceled.

“We did not make this decision lightly, and we understand that significant logistical implications accompany it (for example, the possible rescheduling of the period for registering for spring classes),” wrote Sexton. “However, providing this information now, we hope, will allow all members of our community to plan ahead and, in some cases at least, to relocate to more comfortable environs. For those who remain, we will continue to do all we can to ease the days ahead.”

The decisions were based on power outages and the lack of full restoration to mass transit.

Weinstein Residence Hall and Kimmel Center will provide food service to students and plans are being formed to shelter students this evening and as long as power is out.

“The days ahead will also call upon our patience and spirit of community. It may be several days before full power is restored,” continued Sexton. “We look forward to returning to the normal rhythms of our lives as we fully restore our academic and physical infrastructure. Let us do so with gratitude for each other and pride in our response to the last few days.”

The NYU facilities at Washington Square, the core of NYU’s spread out campus in the city, only sustained minor damage. Power outages are impacting NYU’s Langone Medical Center “most acutely,” according to Sexton, where 200 patients were transferred either within the medical center or to other hospitals.

Success Academy Charter Schools (a network of 14 charter schools in New York City) also announced on Tuesday they will close for the rest of the week.

Some schools haven’t decided yet whether to resume classes. The City University of New York system of 24 colleges and universities hasn’t. CUNY Chancellor Matthew Goldstein said in a letter to students and staff that several CUNY campuses “are coping with significant challenges relating to the storm.”

The Borough of Manhattan Community College, for instance, suffered much water damage at its main 199 Chambers Street campus. Kingsborough Community College in Manhattan Beach was also flooded, while Hunter College’s Brookdale campus on East 25th and First Avenue was damaged extensively by water.

“We will continue to assess the damage, work with the City to assist people in need of temporary shelter, and seek to re-open the University when we can do so safely and securely,” wrote Goldstein.

Meanwhile, at least one university, Columbia, will resume classes on Wednesday, with only several exceptions.

 ”We know that transportation within the five boroughs and wider metropolitan area will remain a challenge for several days to come and that there will inevitably be some students, faculty and staff who may have special difficulty reaching our campuses,” wrote the university on its website. ” We want to emphasize that everyone whose families, homes and neighborhoods have been severely affected by the storm have our full support in attending to their needs on the home front in the days ahead.”

Public schools in New York City will be closed on Wednesday but no decision has been made public regarding Thursday or Friday.

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7:12 p.m. Tuesday — Zoos Fared Well, But Aquarium Extensively Flooded

The New York Aquarium, which is located just yards away from the Coney Island boardwalk, suffered extensive flooding during the surge from Hurricane Sandy.

Jim Breheny, WCS Bronx Zoo Director and EVP of WCS Zoos and Aquarium did not give specifics regarding the damage and said they were still assessing everything.

Breheny said Mitik, the walrus calf who recently came to the aquarium with health issues, was given around the clock care during the storm. No word on the specifics of the other animals.

Breheny said the Bronx, Central Park, Prospect Park, and Queens zoos did not experience extensive damage and all the animals fared well.

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7:22 p.m. Tuesday — NBA Unsure of Brooklyn Nets Home Opener

The 19,000-seat arena at Barclays Center shows the steeply racked seating, which brings patrons closer to the action. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

The 19,000-seat arena at Barclays Center shows the steeply racked seating, which brings patrons closer to the action. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

 The NBA is still assessing whether the Brooklyn Nets will have their their highly anticipated home opener against rival New York Knicks at the brand new Barclay’s Center on Thursday, Nov. 1.

“Tonight’s games will be played,” Tim Frank, the N.B.A.’s senior vice president for communications told the New York Times. “We are still assessing the situation with regards to the rest of the week.”  

Mayor Michael Bloomberg had no further knowledge, but said, “I hope they do it. I plan to go. But it is going to be tough to get there.”

The mayor noted one of the best features of the Barclay’s Center was the close proximity to Atlantic Terminal, which houses nine MTA subway lines and the LIRR—systems that may not be open in time for tip off. 

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7:16 p.m. Tuesday — Mayor Bloomberg Addresses the City on Road to Recovery

Mayor Michael Bloomberg gave the latest update from the Office of Emergency Management headquarters in Brooklyn as the city begins a huge clean-up.

“Sandy hit us very hard. It was a storm of historic intensity, but New Yorkers are resilient,” Bloomberg said.

Calls have poured in from around the world with nations offering their support. President Obama spoke with Bloomberg, offering to visit New York City, but the mayor suggested he visit harder-hit New Jersey instead.

“We would love to have him, but we have lots of things to do,” Bloomberg said. “I think the thing for him to do is to go to New Jersey and represent the country.”

A woman surveys the damage in the Breezy Point neighborhood of Queens, New York, on Oct. 30. Over 80 homes were burnt in a fire that spread quickly due to high winds. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

A woman surveys the damage in the Breezy Point neighborhood of Queens, New York, on Oct. 30. Over 80 homes were burnt in a fire that spread quickly due to high winds. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Mayor Bloomberg, Senator Chuck Schumer, and Speaker Christine Quinn conducted a helicopter tour of the devastated areas, which provided a clear look at the damage.

Bloomberg also walked heavily-damaged Breezy Point, which he described as looking like a picture after a bombing in WWII. “It was completely leveled,” he said.

The mayor reported 18 fatalities citywide during the storm.

Restoring transit and power remain the top priority for Bloomberg saying, “It’s a mammoth job.”

Transit
MTA began running limited bus service in areas with roads that are clear enough. Fares are free, which should continue through Wednesday when more service is expected to be added. The buses are running on a Saturday schedule.  

Bloomberg said 4,000 yellow cabs were on the streets when he last checked at 4:30 p.m. Taxis are operating on a regular fare basis and not zone rates, which happened during like last year’s Irene storm. The mayor issued an executive order allowing multiple passengers for the time being.

The city’s 76 shelters, which are housing 6,400 people, will remain open.

Aid
Anyone affected by Hurricane Sandy can apply for disaster assistance by going to disasterassitance.gov or calling 1800-621-3362

Halloween

Five-year-old Aidan (R) pulls his seven-year-old sister Autumn and their pumpkins in a wagon through the patch at Councell Farms in Easton, MD, Oct. 17, ahead of the Halloween holiday. (JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)

Five-year-old Aidan (R) pulls his seven-year-old sister Autumn and their pumpkins in a wagon through the patch at Councell Farms in Easton, MD, Oct. 17, ahead of the Halloween holiday. (JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)

The mayor said Halloween can continue as scheduled on Wednesday. “Most streets in the city will be safe, but some may not be,” Bloomberg said, “Use good judgment and be careful, particularly if there are no lights.”

The annual Greenwich Halloween Parade is cancelled because NYPD cannot spare the manpower. A new date will be set some time next week.

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7:11 p.m. Tuesday — ConEd Power Update

Kevin Burke, CEO of ConEd said the system was devastated. “This was the worst storm in ConEd history.”

Burke said the transmission lines at the East River Plant, which feeds seven substations and provides power to 220,000 residents were knocked out by the storm surge. He expected repairs to take three to four days.

Many buildings are still without power on Tuesday evening. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

Many buildings are still without power on Tuesday evening. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

The 42nd Street shutdown, which was preventative, was successful, with Burke saying those systems were not damaged.

The steam system is active above 42nd Street, but nothing below as of yet. Burke said they are assessing the damage and will keep the public updated.

Customers with overhead powerlines did not fare well in the storm. “This was a tremendous storm in respect to our overhead customer,” Burke said.

To put it into perspective, 200,000 overhead customers lost power during Irene. Burke said Sandy knocked out double that number.

Burke said workers from as far away as California are on their way to help with repairs.

He said service in some areas will return within a day, while others will be without power until the weekend.

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6:24 p.m. Tuesday — Local Minor Coastal Flooding Possible During Tonight’s High Tide

Expected water levels are likely to remain below minor flood benchmarks but will come close Wednesday night around high tide, between 9 p.m. to 10 p.m. in New York harbor and the south shore bays of New York City and Long Island. Tidal delays will mean the same rise will occur between 11:30 p.m. and 1 a.m. on Long Island Sound.

Flood waters around New York city are receding and soon expected to fall below Minor Coastal flood benchmarks. However the usual tidal rise is likely bring waters back up which will again exceed Minor Coastal Flood levels stated a Coastal Flood Statement issued by NWS New York City, Upton, at  2:17 p.m. on Oct. 30.

The affected areas include Bronx, Kings, Nassau, New York, Queens, Richmond, Suffolk, and Westchester Counties.

Be aware that 1.5 to 2 feet of excess water is still on land and can be expected to recede during the outgoing tides tonight. The report recommends to follow the direction of local law enforcement and exercise extreme caution in these areas.

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5:03 p.m. Weather Expert Explains Sandy’s Wrath

The facade of a building in the Chelsea area of Manhattan is revealed after Hurricane Sandy ripped through the area on Oct. 30. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times)

The facade of a building in the Chelsea area of Manhattan is revealed after Hurricane Sandy ripped through the area on Oct. 30. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times)

Jared Klein from the National Weather Service, Baltimore, explained how Sandy’s impact was vastly different between Washington, D.C., and New York/New Jersey.

“They have to do with the storm surge because [Washington was] south of the storm so we had winds coming out of the Chesapeake Bay, whereas [New York and New Jersey] were north of the storm so they had winds coming on shore and water piling up there.”

With the aerial pressure, the winds in the northern hemisphere of the storm, the winds spin counter clockwise, Klein said.

“So they had much different impacts there,” he said.

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4:21 p.m. Tuesday — Transportation Recommendations

Transportation Alternatives, a group that advocates for pedestrians, bicyclists, and mass transit riders, has called for transportation relief in the midst of the Hurricane Sandy aftermath.

With subway service currently suspended—portions are expected to be restored tomorrow—the organization released some recommendations for city officials:

  •     Emergency bus lanes to allow swift transit throughout the city until subway service is restored.
  •     Emergency street reservations exclusively for the safe use of walkers, bikers and emergency vehicles.
  •     Off-Peak bridge biking and walking lanes to ensure sufficient safe space for people on foot and bicycle and prevent overcrowding on the bridges.
  •     Emergency biking lanes on well-used routes to enable safe mobility, including coned-off Midtown bike lanes.
  •     Bike parking stations and temporary bike storage in major employment centers in Lower Manhattan including Foley Square, Union Square, Herald Square, Times Square, Washington Square Park, and Bryant Park.
  •     High occupancy vehicle requirements on crossings into the most congested areas of the city.
  •     Carpool staging areas offering parking and passenger pick-up locations in support of drivers sharing rides to meet the HOV requirements.

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3:31 p.m. Tuesday — Floor of Stock Exchange Open Wednesday

The New York Stock Exchange on Oct. 30, as New Yorkers clean up the morning after Hurricane Sandy made landfall. (TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)

The New York Stock Exchange on Oct. 30, as New Yorkers clean up the morning after Hurricane Sandy made landfall. (TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)

The floor of the New York Stock Exchange will be open for business on Wednesday, Oct. 31, according to a release from the NYSE Euronext.

“We are pleased to be able to return to normal trading tomorrow,” said Duncan Niederauer, CEO of NYSE Euronext, in a statement. “Our building and systems were not damaged and our people have been working diligently to ensure that we have a smooth opening tomorrow.”

Trading will begin at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday with normal operating procedures.

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2:33 p.m. Tuesday — Many Schools Canceled for Wednesday

Many schools will remain closed on Wednesday.

The public school system will remain closed, according to Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

The City University of New York system, which includes 24 colleges and universities across the city, will remain closed. So will other colleges such as the New School and New York University.

Columbia University hasn’t decided on whether to cancel classes on Wednesday, while the university has opened its Morningside campus on the Upper West side.

Many private schools will be closed in the New York City area though some schools outside the area have announced they are opening, according to the State Association of Independent Schools.

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2:22 p.m. Tuesday — Con Ed: Power Will Take at Least a Week to Fully Restore

Full power restoration will take at least a week for customers served by overhead power lines, according to utility provider Con Edison.

A downed tree on Tuesday afternoon in Harrison, Westchester County, New York. (Katy Mantyk/The Epoch Times)

A downed tree on Tuesday afternoon in Harrison, Westchester County, New York. (Katy Mantyk/The Epoch Times)

Those served by underground lines will likely see restoration within four days, as will all customers in Brooklyn and Manhattan.

Many of the roads in areas with overhead lines are blocked by fallen trees or are flooded, says Con Ed.

As of 2:10 p.m. 11,427 outages in New York City and Westchester combined were reported, according to Con Ed’s power outage map. However, these outages affected approximately 780,000 customers—each outage affects multiple households—including a quarter of a million in Manhattan, as of 11 a.m.

The latest update from Governor Cuomo said about 2.1 million New Yorkers statewide are without power as of 2:20 p.m.

Here’s the breakdown: 

Central Hudson: 66,960
ConEd: 787,255
Long Island Power Authority: 948,724
National Grid: 17,812
NYSEG (Mostly upstate): 113,692
Orange & Rockland: 143,967
Rochester Gas & Electric: 20,002

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1:59 p.m. Tuesday — New Jersey Transit Heavily Impacted

The flooded Newark Penn station in New Jersey. (Courtesy of NJ Transit)

The flooded Newark Penn station in New Jersey. (Courtesy of NJ Transit)

While portions of the New York transit system are being restored Tuesday and Wednesday, the New Jersey transit will be down for a while, according to government officials.

The New Jersey Transit posted a photo at around 1:45 p.m. Wednesday of a flooded Newark Penn station.

Governor Chris Christie said earlier that the PATH system will not be up and running for at least seven days and possibly as long as 10 days.

“No time estimate at this time,” said the NJ transit Twitter account, answering a question from a resident. “Crews are still assessing the damage.”

Earlier the account said Sandy “has devastated NJTransit’s operation and infrastructure.” 

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12:49 p.m. Tuesday — Damage in Queens

Assemblyman Phillip Goldfeder has given updates on the impact of Hurricane Sandy.

Boardwalk at Beach 80th Street "is completely destroyed," tweeted Assemblyman Phillip Goldfeder while posting this picture.

Boardwalk at Beach 80th Street "is completely destroyed," tweeted Assemblyman Phillip Goldfeder while posting this picture.

Goldfeder posted pictures of damage to the Rockaways, which are in Queens and in Zone A, the set of areas where residents were urged to evacuate on Sunday and Monday.

The boardwalk of Rockaway Beach has been thrown off its supports, according to several pictures Goldfeder posted on Twitter.

Near the beach debris and pieces of boardwalk had trapped cars.  

 

 

Area near waterfront. (Courtesy of Assemblyman Phillip Goldfeder)

Area near waterfront. (Courtesy of Assemblyman Phillip Goldfeder)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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12:16 p.m. TuesdayNew Transit Update: Portions of Subway May be Restored Wednesday

New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo speaks at a press conference on Oct 29, before Hurricane Sandy hit. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times)

New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo speaks at a press conference on Oct 29, before Hurricane Sandy hit. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times)

Limited bus service will start at 5 p.m. Tuesday, said Governor Andrew Cuomo at an update just before noon. No fares will be charged.

Getting the transit system going again is one of the biggest challenges, according to Mayor Michael Bloomberg. 

Joseph Lhota, MTA chief and CEO, announced soon afterwards that less-damaged portions of the subway system could be restarted as soon as Wednesday.

“If there are parts of the subway system we can get up, we will get them up,” he said. A date for full restoration has not been given.

The damage has been substantial. Tunnels have been flooded, including the Clark Street tunnel, the Rutgers Street Tunnel, and the Hugh Carey Tunnel.

Lhota said the South Street station has “water literally up to the ceiling.”

Gov. Cuomo said New Yorkers can build smarter while rebuilding from the storm. “We have to start to think about how do we redesign the system so this doesn’t happen again,” he said.

“I don’t think anyone can sit back anymore and say I’m shocked at that weather pattern,” he added. “There is no weather pattern that can shock me at this point.”  

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12:01 p.m. Tuesday—Bloomberg Gives Overview of Sandy Aftermath

Mayor Bloomberg gave an overview of the city’s conditions after the storm.

“Hurricane Sandy has officially left the New York City area, but the path of destruction if left will be felt for quite some time,” he said Tuesday morning. “It was a storm of unprecedented proportions.”

Airport runways are currently flooded; there will be no flights leaving or arriving.

Schools will be closed on Wednesday, as they were Monday and Tuesday.  

The two biggest challenges the city currently faces are restoring the transit system and power.

Around 60,000 people in 26,000 apartments in Zone A are without power right now. “Our administration will move heaven and earth to help MTA and Con Ed,” Bloomberg said.

“Bridges and roadways will reopen faster if New Yorkers stay off the roads,” he added.

Given extent of damage, it may take 2-3 days for power to be restored—and perhaps longer in many places.

The subway yards where trains are stored are currently flooded. There were no damages brought to the subways and buses, but restoring services will be difficult because the subway tunnels are flooded.

Bloomberg said bus services and roads could potentially be restored by tomorrow.

However, 57th St. and Sixth Ave. will remain closed until winds calm down. The broken crane arm that dangled from the 70th floor on 57th St. and Sixth Ave. has been stabilized. “But we can’t secure it until winds die down, then we can reopen the streets,” Bloomberg said.

Rescue Teams

There are no numbers on how many rescue workers were injured Monday night, but no rescue workers have lost their lives. Many first responders are still fighting fires and on rescue missions at this moment.

An expansive fire at Breezy Point, Queens, is now under control. But it is estimated that 80 houses were lost.  

“It looked like a forest fire in the Midwest, fire from one building was blowing to the next. We are hoping there was no life lost in those fires,” Bloomberg said. “But many have lost their homes and we want them to know they have our full support in the days and weeks ahead.”

The mayor announced that all city shelters will remain open until displaced people can find temporary housing or return to their homes.

At least 10 deaths have been confirmed so far in the city. “Unfortunately the numbers will go up as more information comes in,” he said. There were no storm related fatalities at any of the hospitals that lost power during the storm.

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11:29 a.m. Tuesday—Support Coming to New York

Support from outside states is coming to New York in the form of teams from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, said Senator Charles Schumer.

Support people, including for restoring power, are coming from far away states since many of the surrounding states have also been heavily impacted by Sandy.

The head of Caterpillar, a company that manufactures heavy construction tools, is sending more than 200 generators to the city to help with powering hospitals and other essential buildings, Schumer added, speaking at a late morning press conference with the mayor.

Though the damage from Sandy isn’t as bad as 9/11, it is still extensive, said Schumer.

New York will get a lot of reimbursement through federal funds for clean up and other costs, though it is undetermined as of yet how much.

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11:33 a.m. Tuesday — Transit Updates

Limited bus service will start at 5 p.m. today, said Governor Andrew Cuomo. No fares will be charged.

No timetable has been set to re-start the subway system, which takes lead in time, according to the MTA, which runs both the buses and subway, as well as the commuter rail.

Getting the transit system going again is one of the two biggest challenges, according to Mayor Michael Bloomberg. He said he guesses it could be three to four days until subway service is restored, but right after that the MTA said no timetable has been set, yet.

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11:05 a.m. Flooding in Brooklyn

Flooding in Brooklyn has been captured with photographs from Assemblyman Alec Brook-Krasny.

All photos Courtesy of Assemblyman Alec Brook-Krasny

All photos Courtesy of Assemblyman Alec Brook-Krasny

Brook-Krasny’s photos show flooding on Neptune Avenue (Coney Island), on West 33rd Street, and in front of the Mark Twain School.

 

“My district is devastated,” Brook-Krasny tweeted with one picture. He was moving around via car. He also posted a photo of a National Guard vehicle and a gigantic downed tree on 86th and 7th next to Dyker Heights Golf Course.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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10:40 a.m. Tuesday—Sandy Had Devastating Impact on New Jersey, Says Gov. Christie

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie in a briefing. (Screenshot)

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie in a briefing. (Screenshot)

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie said Hurricane Sandy had a devastating impact on the state.

“The devastation is unprecedented—like nothing we’ve ever seen reported before,” said Christie in a 10 a.m. press conference streamed live.

Three persons are confirmed dead in New Jersey. Two were parents who got out of a car and were crushed by a tree.

But more damaging was the storm taking homes off of foundations.

“I didn’t expect it to be that bad. I didn’t expect we would see homes off of their foundations and in the middle of state highways,” said Christie.

Those were homes on the Jersey Shore, seen from helicopter by officials, including SeaSide Heights and SeaSide Parks.

Homeowners wanting to get back into their homes should hold tight. “We are nowhere near being able to let you back on the island,” said Christie.

Christie said it would take 7 to 10 days before the PATH (the subway system that links Manhattan and New Jersey) would begin operating again.

A number of places in New Jersey have lost power. Tens of thousands are out of power, according to an outage map from PSE & G. Five substations in the Newark Bay area alone were completely compromised, according to Christie, which typically serve 1.2 million households.

“It is a daunting task ahead for the power companies,” said Christie. It will take months to recover from the damage, Christie added. He expects help from the federal government.

The only bright spot was that Sandy sped up before reaching New Jersey, said Christie, from 14 miles per hour to 28 miles per hour. “It would have been worse, had it lingered,” said Christie.  

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10:15 a.m Tuesday— South Street Seaport Took on Heavy Water

Workers at 120 Wall Street. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

Workers at 120 Wall Street. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

Trees in the surrounding area are uprooted, and the ground is slippery from oil spills. There is a heavy gasoline odor outside. Some stores have their windows broken from last night’s heavy wind.

There is 12-15 feet of water flooding in the basement of Citibank near South Street Seaport on Wall Street.

Several Wall Street buildings were flooded last night. The 110 South Wall Street office building was flooded with 10 feet of water, according to an employee. 

Lamond Poole, part of the building staff, was stuck in building 120 overnight with 13 co-workers.

“It was kind of like a reality show,” he said. “Or like a movie, War of the Worlds.”

Although the windows were boarded up last night, water gushed into the basement. They evacuated to the fourth floor.

“We had to leave the basement and only took what we could carry,” he said. “It was emotional and disturbing.”

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9:43 a.m. Tuesday — Delis and Restaurants Opening in Midtown and Flatiron

Hill Country BBQ Market on 26th St., between 6th Ave. and Broadway

Bread and Butter on 17th St. and Park Ave.

Restaurants by Penn Station are open

Pete’s Tavern on 18th St. and Irving Pl.

Food & Deli on 24th St. and Third Ave.

Speedy’s on 32nd St. and Broadway

Star Gourmet Deli and Pizza on corner of 27th St. and Sixth Ave.

America Gourmet Food on 29th St. and Sixth Ave.

Sunac Fancy Food between 26t St. and 25th St. on Sixth Ave.

Martinique Cafe on Greeley Square

Koreatown is Open

Emma’s Dilemma Cafe, between 21st St. and 22nd St. on Park Ave.

L’Express Bouchon on 20th St. and Park Ave.

Big Daddy’s Diner on 19th St. and Park Ave.

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10:11 a.m. Tuesday — City Workers Asked to Help

City workers are being told to report to work, if they can get there safely.

If a worker’s office is closed, they are being asked to report to a nearby shelter to “assist with operations.”

Shelter locations are here: http://www.nyc.gov/html/misc/html/2012/hurricane_shelters.html
Locate one close by to you here: http://www.google.org/crisismap/2012-sandy-nyc

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9:30 a.m Tuesday—Battery Park Awakes

A windswept Battery Park. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

A windswept Battery Park. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

Some Battery Park residents are beginning their day by going out for a jog, or a walk with their dogs as life goes on after Hurricane Sandy. One tree is knocked down, but overall, there are no major damages. The water levels below the walkway, however, are still currently at a high tide.

 

 

 

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9:20 a.m. Tuesday — Tappan Zee Bridge Reopens, Some City Employees Return to Work

The Tappan Zee Bridge is now open, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced on Twitter on Tuesday morning. Mayor Bloomberg also announced that city employees should return to work today if their offices are open.

“If your office is open and you can safely report to work, please do so -- but only if you can get in safely,” Bloomberg said in a statement. “If your office is closed and you can safely report to a nearby shelter to assist with operations, please do so.”

Rumors of the MTA opening Tuesday afternoon are false. “No timetable for restoring bus and subway service has been set,” MTA officials announced on their twitter.

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8:40 a.m. Tuesday — World Trade Center Construction Site Flooded

The World Trade Center site is flooded up to the second floor with sewer water, a construction worker told The Epoch Times this morning.

“We had to run out of there last night,” he said. “It’s all underwater, second level, all the way up.”

Structurally, the building remains intact.  

A World Trade Center media contact could not be reached this morning.

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8:30 a.m. Tuesday — ‘We’re Survivors’

“We’re 9/11 survivors, so this is just a little water … hopefully the power comes on quicker than not,” said Debbie Lougee, who has been living in Lower Manhattan since 1998. Her building currently has gas and water, but no elevator.

“It was like a waterfall coming into the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel. You could have done white water rafting in there,” Lougee told The Epoch Times as she recalled the hurricane last night.

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8 a.m. Tuesday — Ten National Parks in New York Harbor Closed Until Wednesday

The ten parks that make up the National Parks of New York Harbor will remain closed until Wednesday, Oct. 31.  However, the National Park Service advises visitors to call or check the park’s website, or (212) 363-3200 before traveling to the parks on that day.

Those parks include the African Burial Ground National Monument, Castle Clinton National Monument, Federal Hall National Memorial, Gateway National Recreation Area, General Grant National Memorial, Hamilton Grange National Memorial, Saint Paul’s Church National Historic Site, Statue of Liberty National Monument, Ellis Island, and Theodore Roosevelt Birthplace National Historic Site.

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7:50 a.m. Tuesday — Sandy Causes Sixteen Deaths in the United States

By Oct. 30, 16 people in the United States have died as a result of Hurricane Sandy. In New York, five people lost their lives, according to the Chicago Tribune.  Others died in New Jersey, New York, Maryland, North Carolina, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Connecticut, according to the Chicago Tribune.

Although Hurricane Sandy was only a Category 1 on a scale of five, its “astoundingly low” barometric pressure gave it terrific energy to push water inland, said Kerry Emanuel, a professor of meteorology at MIT.

The New York metropolitan area was the hardest hit.

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7 a.m Tuesday — Update: New York Tap Water Safe to Drink

For those who do have water coming out of their faucet, it is safe to drink, Mayor Bloomberg confirmed through twitter Tuesday morning. 

As of 7 a.m. Tuesday morning, 1,937,202 New Yorkers are out of power from Hurricane Sandy, Governor Cuomo tweeted.

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6:50 a.m. Tuesday — Post Tropical Cyclone Sandy Moving at 15 mph

The post tropical cyclone Sandy is traveling west across southern Pennsylvania, moving at 15 mph, according to a weather advisory.

A slower west-northwest path  is expected today in western Pennsylvania, with a turn into western New York tonight. The cyclone will move into Canada on Wednesday. Maximum sustained winds have slowed to 65 mph. The storm will be steadily weakening in the next 48 hours.

Although water levels along the coast have been decreasing, the combination of storm surge and the tide could still cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded with rising waters. During the high tide cycle the surge could reach two to four feet in Chesapeake Bay, Md.; and one to three feet in Jersey Shore north towards Massachusetts.

There are high-wind warnings in effect over the coastal areas of the Mid-Atlantic states, such as New York and New England.

The next weather advisory is expected at 11 a.m.

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12:39 a.m. Tuesday — Post-Tropical Cyclone Sandy Update (National Weather Center)

The latest forecast by the National Weather Center says Sandy is “still packing hurricane-force winds.”

The 11 p.m. update is the last before a 5 a.m. update on Tuesday morning.

The storm’s location at the time of forecast was about 10 miles southwest of Philadelphia, with maximum winds of 75 miles per hour, moving northwest at 18 miles per hour.

Gusts are possible through the next hour or two (11 p.m. to 1 a.m.) between Chincoteague, Virginia, and Chatham, Massachusetts—including the New York City area, Long Island, and Connecticut.

Storm surges, which reached up to 14 feet around Manhattan, have receded, but much flooding and damage remains, including uprooted trees and other destruction.

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12:33 a.m. Tuesday — Staten Island Update

More than 75,000 Staten Island customers are out of power currently, according to utility provider Con Edison. The company serves 174,202 households on the island.

Hurricane turned Post-Tropical Cyclone Sandy has impacted Staten Island to the point that Councilman Jimmy Oddo called Monday “one of the worst days in Staten Island’s history.”

“It really feels like a war zone out there,” Oddo said. “Awful things have happened.”

Members of the Hague family try to salvage a washing machine from their flood-damaged home on November 1, 2012 in the Ocean Breeze area of the Staten Island borough of New York City. Their house, like many in the seaside community, was innundated by the ocean surge caused by Superstorm Sandy. (John Moore/Getty Images)

Members of the Hague family try to salvage a washing machine from their flood-damaged home on November 1, 2012 in the Ocean Breeze area of the Staten Island borough of New York City. Their house, like many in the seaside community, was innundated by the ocean surge caused by Superstorm Sandy. (John Moore/Getty Images)

Much like Manhattan, Staten Island became isolated when the bridges connecting it to other land masses were closed, the last one (Goethals Bridge) closed around 9 p.m. The Staten Island Ferry shut down on Sunday evening.

Waters began receding late Monday night, reported the Staten Island Advance, but only after some residents—in many areas, including Cedar Grove Beach, Roma Avenue, Marine Way, and Garibaldi Street in New Dorp Beach—were forced onto their roofs because of heavy flooding. No casualties have been confirmed for the island.

The chaos grew as the evening progressed, to the point where a man, wading through high waters, fired a gun shot in an attempt to get the attention of rescue officials, according to the SI Advance. Rowboats are being used to rescue families, and in one neighborhood in New Dorp Beach, as much as six feet of water has flooded into homes.

The YouTube video shows flooding in Bay Street on Staten Island in the early evening on Monday. Flooding got worse as the night progressed, and was worse in some areas more than others. (Youtube/haddadsimon)

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11:37 p.m. Monday — Power Outage Report

Gov. Andrew Cuomo tweeted a power outage update late on Sunday night.

As of 11 p.m. Monday night, 1,591,335 New Yorkers are without power from the effects of Hurricane Sandy.

The almost 1.6 million New Yorkers without power include a quarter of a million-plus in Lower Manhattan and more than 28,000 in Brooklyn around Coney Island, according to Con Edison.

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11:13 p.m. Monday — Subway and Bus Service Restoration Unknown, Says MTA

There is no timetable for restoration of subway, bus, and commuter rail service, according to the MTA.

After reports that the systems, particularly the subway system, would be out for 5 days, an MTA representative said via Twitter that the reports were wrong.

“[We] cannot set timetable without yet assessing what’s down there,” said MTA spokesman Kevin Ortiz.

Water rushes into the Carey Tunnel (previously the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel), caused by Hurricane Sandy, Oct. 29, in the Financial District of New York. Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the closure of all New York City bus, subway, and commuter rail service as of Sunday evening. (Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

Water rushes into the Carey Tunnel (previously the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel), caused by Hurricane Sandy, Oct. 29, in the Financial District of New York. Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the closure of all New York City bus, subway, and commuter rail service as of Sunday evening. (Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

Then, 36 minutes later, the official Twitter feed of the MTA tweeted that the subway tunnels under the East River had been infiltrated by water.

“We cannot confirm a depth,” the Tweet said.

Earlier in the day, the CEO of the MTA, Joseph Lhota, said that electrical equipment—switches and signals—would be damaged if saltwater comes into contact with it.

“The corrosion that could come from there is significant,” Lhota said at a press conference with the mayor. “The general ability to run the system and to keep it safe is in jeopardy.”  

An email sent to Ortiz asking how long it will take to restore the system once the decision is made to restore it has gone unanswered so far.

While surveying damage to Lower Manhattan, Lhota told Alex Silverman, reporter for WCBS 880, that he’s “”Trying to get a read on how bad it is.”

“If it gets much worse, I don’t know,” Lhota added.

Adam Lisberg, another MTA spokesperson, said via Twitter that the “Entire Hudson River is flowing into Ground Zero, Carey Tunnel and subways.”

“It sounds like Niagara Falls,” he added. “Too dark for pic[ture].”

Subway service was also shut down during Tropical Storm Irene last year. Gov. Cuomo announced restoration of the service then on Sunday evening, Aug. 28 (Sunday), and service was restored--with some exceptions--by 6 a.m. the next morning.

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10:54 p.m. Monday — How About Building Barrier Reefs or Surge Barriers Around New York?

The concepts of storm surge barriers may have crossed the minds of many encountering Hurricane Sandy.

At one of his public updates on Monday, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said, “We cannot build a big barrier reef off the shore that will stop the waves from coming in.”

Four different concepts for barriers were explored by infrastructure experts in 2009.

Water from the Hudson river breaches the wall in Lower Manhattan Oct. 29, as New Yorkers prepare for Hurricane Sandy to hit late Monday night. (TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)

Water from the Hudson river breaches the wall in Lower Manhattan Oct. 29, as New Yorkers prepare for Hurricane Sandy to hit late Monday night. (TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)

From the summary:

“Michael Abrahams of Parsons Brinckerhoff proposed a flap-type barrier for the upper East River with a series of panels across the river that normally rest on the bottom, but are raised when a surge is expected.

Larry Murphy of Camp Dresser & McKee showed a barrier across the Arthur Kill with tide gates, parallel navigation locks, and a pedestrian drawbridge.
   
Peter Jansen and Piet Dircke of Arcadis presented the design of a barrier across the Narrows, just north of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge. The barrier would consist of a pair of rolling or sliding sector gates spanning an 870-foot opening in the center, adjoined by 16 lifting gates with a span of 130 feet, and two lifting gates with a span of 165 feet.

Dennis Padron and Graeme Forsythe of Halcrow introduced another concept. They proposed a New York–New Jersey Outer Harbor Gateway, a barrier extending from Sandy Hook to the Rockaways, a 5-mile-long system of causeway and gates. A key consideration of the outer barrier system concept is that it would not be intended to completely prevent surge waters outflanking the flood defenses at the extreme ends of the barrier system, but rather it would deflect surge energy and mitigate water levels in the Upper and Lower Bay to manageable levels.”

Estimates of the costs for the barriers were (top to bottom) $1.5 billion, $1.1 billion, $6.5 billion, and $5.9 billion.

HydroQual Inc. estimates barriers would reduce the flooded area by 25 percent, the population affected by 20 percent, and property value impact by 35 percent.

Joshua Friedman, of New York City’s Office of Emergency Management, told those at the event that “a catastrophic storm surge,” will affect two million New Yorkers.

Storm surges during Post-tropical Cyclone Sandy set record levels, at least at Battery Park, reaching 13.88 feet at 9:24 p.m. Tides began receding at 9:57 p.m.

Read more about the seminar here.

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10:26 p.m. Monday — Mayor Bloomberg: Only Call 911 in an Emergency

Mayor Bloomberg said that right now, 911 is receiving 10,000 calls per half hour.

“Please, please, please only call 911 for life-threatening emergencies,” Bloomberg said in a briefing at 10 p.m.

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10:24 p.m. Monday — Long Island City Update

Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer received this photograph from a local resident in Long Island City, Queens. Long Island City is seeing a significant rise along the East River at the Gantries. (Courtesy of Council Member Jimmy van Bramer)

Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer received this photograph from a local resident in Long Island City, Queens. Long Island City is seeing a significant rise along the East River at the Gantries. (Courtesy of Council Member Jimmy van Bramer)

Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer received this photograph from a local resident in Long Island City, Queens, Monday evening around 9 p.m. Long Island City is seeing a significant rise along the East River at the Gantries.

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10:21 p.m. Monday — West Side Update

On the West Side of Midtown, water made accessing land close to the Hudson River impossible. Tenth Avenue could not be traversed on 30th Street nor the streets just north.

Contrast: in Lower Manhattan, a carousel half submerged; the World Trade Center site flooding; many areas losing power; cars overcome by water. In Midtown, tourists wander on the streets, residents surveyed the much milder impacts, and more than a handful of small businesses remained open.

Two customers in a deli at 9th Ave. and 32nd St. The manager Jimmy Ali said they are not planning on closing. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

Two customers in a deli at 9th Ave. and 32nd St. The manager Jimmy Ali said they are not planning on closing. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

“We are open 24 hours a day,” said Jimmy Ali, manager at a deli at 9th and 32nd. Two customers sat eating. Ali and his employee seemed ready to weather the storm. “We’re scared,” he said, but they would only leave “if we see the water get closer.”

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10:10 p.m. Monday — Huge ConEd Explosion on Lower East Side

A huge explosion on the Lower East Side is thought to be a Con Ed power facility. Power in Lower Manhattan went out immediately following the explosion. One resident said they may be without power for a week.

Watch a YouTube video of the explosion here.

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9:39 p.m. Monday — Airports Officially Closed 

The Port Authority has closed JFK, Newark, and Teterboro Airports until further notice. The closures are due to “floodwaters generated by hurricane Sandy,” according to a statement by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

Travelers are advised to check the Port Authority website for updated information PATH, the airports, the tunnels and bridges, and all other Port Authority facilities.

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9:14 p.m. Monday — Water Entering MTA System

Floodwaters from Hurricane Sandy enter the Hugh L. Carey Tunnel (former Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel). Gov. Andrew Cuomo ordered the tunnel closed at 2 p.m. on Monday, October 29, 2012. (MTA Bridges and Tunnels)

Floodwaters from Hurricane Sandy enter the Hugh L. Carey Tunnel (former Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel). Gov. Andrew Cuomo ordered the tunnel closed at 2 p.m. on Monday, October 29, 2012. (MTA Bridges and Tunnels)

MTA spokesman Kevin Ortiz sent a tweet saying: “Water entering all Lower Manhattan under river tubes.
Flooding in stations and tubes in Lower Manhattan as well as parts of Queens. Water reaching the platform at Rockaway Park.”

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8:45 p.m. Monday — Coney Island and Manhattan Island Under Water

The situation is dire in Coney Island and Manhattan Beach with NYPD braving the deep flood waters to perform multiple water rescues, according to tweets by NYC ARECS.

“Coney Island is under water & the police are doing their best, but are backed up with NUMEROUS water rescues on land!” Tweeted NYC ARECS.

An 8:30 p.m. a post from NYC ARECS said police were trapped in 3-4 feet of water.

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8:42 p.m. — Two Deaths, in New York and Connecticut

Police confirmed with The Associated Press on Monday evening that a man died after a tree fell on his house. It is the first recorded death in New York City due to the storm.

The 30-year-old man, who was not identified, lived in East Flushing, Queens, reported The New York Times.

@CNBC said the man was “apparently trapped underneath tree inside his” 166 Street home.

Another person was killed when a tree fell in Mansfield, Connecticut, officials told The Hartford Courant.

Firefighters and police rushed to the scene near West Highland Road after 6 p.m. and found that the person, who was not identified, was trapped underneath a tree.

The officials did not elaborate on whether the person was walking or was in a car, but the death underscores the peril one faces when going outside during a hurricane.

Before Hurricane Sandy hit the U.S., around 52 people were killed in Haiti, 11 were killed in Cuba, and several more were killed in Jamaica, the Dominican Republic, and the Bahamas. One person was killed in Puerto Rico.

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7:00 p.m. Monday — Fake Pictures Quickly Circulate on Social Media

As Hurricane Sandy moves closer to New York City and the metropolitan area, pictures taken on the streets and from buildings are quickly being shared online, principally through Twitter and Facebook.

One photo of a swirling back cloud amassing behind the Statue of Liberty gained traction and was shared hundreds of thousands of times on Facebook and Twitter. It’s actually from the movie Independence Day.

“This is an amazing shot of New York today with the Frankenstorm bearing down,” wrote Jason Otts on his Facebook post, who lives in Texas, who shared the photo almost 24 hours ago. “Nature is so powerful, yet so beautiful.”

As of 7:17 p.m. Eastern time, the photo had been shared from Otts page 378,700 times. That is just one source—Otts is not the only one sharing it as an original.

Around 5 p.m. Otts posted to his page that many people had added him as a friend on Facebook, which prompted him to call the person who texted him the photo. That woman called her friend who sent it to her (and who lives in New York), who told her it was a fake.

“Funny, but awkward,” commented Otts.

Other photos circulating that are either fake, photoshopped, or from some other time include three soldiers withstanding heavy rain at the Tomb of the Unknown soldier at the Arlington National Cemetery; a photo taken by the Wall Street Journal a year ago of clouds forming over Manhattan; and dark clouds forming with the George Washington Bridge in the foreground that was actually a Getty photo taken in 2009.  http://mashable.com/2012/10/29/fake-hurricane-sandy-photos/

“Photoshopped or not, it’s a great picture,” commented one Facebook user on the Statue of Liberty photo.

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6:40 p.m. Monday — Tens of Thousands Without Power 

Con Edison reports “the wrath of Hurricane Sandy has knocked out electrical service to 68,7000 customers,” as of 4:45 p.m.

The customers are spread across New York City (18,500 in Staten Island and 18,200 in Queens) as well as 21,800 customers in Westchester County.

“The Hurricane has struck the New York metropolitan area with more destructive force than previously anticipated,” states the utility provider, which expects more customers to lose power as wind speeds get more powerful and knock trees into overhead wires.

Con Edison has cut steam service to 140 customers in Manhattan for safety reasons. They’re considering shutting down electrical service south of 36th Street if underground equipment “becomes inundated with water.”

Keep posted to the company’s website.
To report an outage or learn how, visit here.

Here are some safety tips from Con Edison:

  • If you see downed electrical wires, do not go near them. Treat all downed wires as if they are live. Never attempt to move or touch them with any object. Be mindful that downed wires can be hidden from view by tree limbs, leaves or water.
  • If you still have electrical power, be sure to fully charge your cell phone, lap top and other mobile devices, as well as any extra batteries, so that you will still be able to communicate in the event that you do lose power.
  • Report all downed wires to Con Edison and your local police department immediately. If a power line falls on your car while you’re in it, stay inside the vehicle and wait for emergency personnel.
  • If your power goes out, turn off all lights and appliances to prevent overloaded circuits when power is restored.
  • Check to make sure your flashlights and any battery-operated radios are working. Also, make sure you have a supply of extra batteries. Weather updates and news on power outages can be heard on most local radio and television stations.
  • Avoid opening your freezer to see if food is still frozen. Every time you open the door, room-temperature air enters and speeds the thawing process. Most fully loaded freezers will keep food frozen for approximately 36 to 48 hours; half-full freezers will keep food frozen for approximately 24 hours.

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6:25 p.m. Monday — Water Levels Over 9 Feet at New York Harbor

Water levels have risen to 9.33 feet at New York Harbor at the Battery, off Lower Manhattan, according to the National Weather Service.

The 6 p.m. reading precedes the peak of the high tide. The high tide at 6 p.m. on Oct. 26 was just over 5 feet. The water has been steadily rising since then.

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6:20 p.m. Monday — No Problems Reported at WTC Site

There are no problems with any of the cranes at One World Trade Center or anywhere else on the site, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey reported.

“The One World Trade Center cranes are properly secured, and the Port Authority has staff members on site and in the building around the clock to check and report on any potential problems,” the authority said in a press release.

Anyone concerned with the Port Authority’s response at the WTC site or at any of the agency’s facilities, which include some of the bridges in the area, are encouraged to follow them on Twitter @PANYNJ

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6:20 p.m. Monday — Hurricane Sandy Expected Only to Reach Level 1

Hurricane Sandy, affecting 450 miles of coastal area, is expected to be the largest hurricane to hit the East Coast in a century. However, the storm that is dubbed “Frankenstorm” is estimated will only reach level 1, which is the lowest out of 5 levels. Hurricane Katrina was a level 5.

Governor Cuomo stated that Sandy’s storm gusts are expected to be up to 80-85 mph. According to the National Hurricane Center, a category 1 hurricane has winds that blow from 74-95 mph. A hurricane would not be considered major until Level 3, which reaches 111-129 mph.

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5:50 p.m. — All Four East River Bridges Shutting Down at 7 p.m on Monday

Mayor Bloomberg announced on his twitter that all four East River bridges will close at 7 p.m due to Hurricane Sandy. The Brooklyn, Manhattan, Williamsburg and Queensboro Bridges will shut down until further notice.

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4:10 p.m. Monday — Center of Sandy Expected to Hit Southern Jersey in 3-5 Hours

The National Hurricane Center states that Sandy is moving toward the West-Northwest. The center of Hurricane Sandy is moving toward Southern New Jersey, near Cape May. The storm is expected to hit the very tip of southern New Jersey or central Delaware in three to five hours.
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4:30 p.m. Monday — Update on New York Bridge Closures and Openings  

People look out at the Verrazano Bridge in Brooklyn as Hurricane Sandy begins to affect the area on October 29, 2012 in New York. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

People look out at the Verrazano Bridge in Brooklyn as Hurricane Sandy begins to affect the area on October 29, 2012 in New York. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Governor Cuomo announced that GW, Verrazano-Narrows, Throgs Neck, Whitestone, Henry Hudson bridges will close tonight at 7 p.m.

MTA is also closing the Cross Bay Bridge at this moment.

“With storm gusts expected to be up to 80-85 mph, the bridges in the NYC area are quickly becoming unsafe,” Cuomo tweeted.

However, Mid-Hudson bridges—such as Bear Mountain Bridge, Newburgh-Beacon, Mid-Hudson Bridge, Kingston-Rhinecliff, Rip Van Winkle—opened as of 4 p.m.

The Midtown tunnel and Robert F. Kennedy Bridge are still currently open, although it may close as the storm progresses.

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3:50 p.m. Monday — Tappan Zee Bridge to Close at 4 p.m Monday

Governor Cuomo announced on Twitter that the Tappan Zee Bridge will close as of 4 p.m. Monday, due to Hurricane Sandy.

The bridge itself is in no danger of collapsing, but “Hurricane Sandy has created conditions that make it hazardous for motorists to use the Tappan Zee and that is why we are closing the bridge,” Cuomo stated.

“We are sensitive to the impact this will have on travelers, but safety is our highest priority and, under current conditions, gusts sweeping across the bridge could flip vehicles or cause serious multi-vehicle accidents.”

Northbound TZB traffic will leave the roadway at exit 8. Local traffic will continue northbound in order to leave at exit 9.

Southbound TZB Thruway traffic will be instructed to leave roadway at or before exit 13, while local traffic can leave at exits 12 and 11.

The bridge will re-open when weather conditions alleviate.

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3:47 p.m. Monday — President Obama Implores Public to Heed Safety Warnings

Air Force One arrives at Andrews Air Force Base in the rain from approaching Hurricane Sandy on October 29, 2012 in Maryland. Obama is returning from campaigning to Washington to monitor Hurricane Sandy as it makes landfall. (Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images)

Air Force One arrives at Andrews Air Force Base in the rain from approaching Hurricane Sandy on October 29, 2012 in Maryland. Obama is returning from campaigning to Washington to monitor Hurricane Sandy as it makes landfall. (Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images)

President Barack Obama warned the public to heed emergency instructions from state and local authorities, describing Hurricane Sandy as a “big storm” and “a difficult storm.”

“When they tell you to evacuate, you need to evacuate … don’t question the instructions that are being given, because this is a serious storm and it could potentially have fatal consequence if people haven’t acted quickly,” Obama said in an emergency press briefing from the White House.

The president had returned to Washington D.C. from Florida early Monday morning, cancelling campaign events in Florida later in the day, plus events in Colorado Ohio and Wisconsin Tuesday.

“The president will remain in Washington, DC to closely monitor the impact of and response to the hurricane,” a White House representative said in a statement.

Category 1 hurricane Sandy is predicted to make landfall sometime in the evening of Oct. 29, but already thousands of people have evacuated from coastal communities as far south as North Carolina and as far north as Maine.

Read the rest of the article here.

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3:25 p.m. Monday — Crane Topples on 57 St. and 6th Ave.  

The New York fire department is currently responding to a toppled crane in Manhattan.

There is “a multiple dwelling crane boom hanging off of 157 W 57 ST,” the Fire Department of New York tweeted.

There will be traffic and delays in that area.

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3:03 p.m. Monday — Replacing Lost Food Due to Flooding and Power Outages

Assistance will be available from the government for some losses, Gov. Andrew Cuomo recently tweeted.
“Households that have lost food due to flooding or power outages may be eligible for Replacement Food Stamp Benefits,” the tweet read.  

For more information, visit: http://www.mybenefits.gov

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2:56 p.m. Monday — Airports Open, But All Flights Suspended

The John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, Stewart International, and LaGuardia airports are currently open, as of 3 p.m. Monday.

“However, air carriers have ceased operations until further notice, and we are encouraging travelers not to travel to the airports,” Port Authority stated.

Rail services on AirTrain JFK and AirTrain Newark are currently suspended.

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2:21 p.m. Monday — Holland Tunnel and Hugh Carey Brooklyn Battery Tunnel Closed

Holland Tunnel and Hugh Carey Brooklyn Battery Tunnel are closed as of 2 p.m. Monday, Gov. Cuomo announced. The Lincoln Tunnel is currently open.

The Holland Tunnel closed at 2 p.m. Monday until further notice due to Hurricane Sandy. The storm, which threatens 50 million people in the eastern third of the U.S., is expected to bring days of rain, high winds and possibly heavy snow. (Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

The Holland Tunnel closed at 2 p.m. Monday until further notice due to Hurricane Sandy. The storm, which threatens 50 million people in the eastern third of the U.S., is expected to bring days of rain, high winds and possibly heavy snow. (Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

“As Hurricane Sandy hits New York State, bringing potentially catastrophic flooding as well as coastal surges that could cause serious destruction, we must take all steps necessary to effectively and forcefully respond and protect New Yorkers,” Cuomo said.

The George Washington Bridge, Goethals Bridge, Bayonne Bridge and Outerbridge Crossing are open and operating with 35 mph speed restrictions, according to the Port Authority.

Cuomo also recently tweeted: “#Sandy still has not arrived, but FDR Drive is under water.”

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2:14 p.m. Monday — Power Outages Begin, Con Edison Has Outage Map

Con Edison has a live power outage map that is updated every 15 minutes. There are some outages across Brooklyn, Queens, and the Bronx, but none in Manhattan as of 2:00 p.m.

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1:10 p.m. Monday — Schools Officially Closed Tuesday

Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott confirmed the closure of all New York City public schools for Tuesday, as well as after-school activities and sports. Administrative offices remain open, as of now.

Classes at schools within the City University of New York system are also closed Tuesday, while other schools such as New York University haven’t announced closure for Tuesday.

Many independent and private schools across New York City and the state are announcing they will be closing via Twitter, compiled on the New York State Association of Independent Schools site.

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1:02 p.m. West Side of Manhattan Calm, For Now

Chelsea Piers, where the sea is "surprisingly calm," according to reporter Kristen Meriwether. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

Chelsea Piers, where the sea is "surprisingly calm," according to reporter Kristen Meriwether. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

The West side of Midtown Manhattan, which falls under mandatory evacuation Zone A, has had a steady rain for the last several hours and gusts of wind but nothing severe, according to a dispatch from Epoch Times reporter Kristen Meriwether.

People are running on paths as if it was a normal day, while cops in a van ordered people away from the railing. Many businesses are closed but a market on 14th Street and 7th Avenue is open, with long lines. The sea remained calm. 

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12:34 p.m. — Businesses Should Not Inflate Prices During Hurricane, Says Attorney General

Businesses cannot inflate the prices of necessary goods and services during Hurricane Sandy, says New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.

Necessary goods include food, water, gas, generators, batteries, and flashlights.

Essentials also include services such as transportation.

“While most vendors understand that customers are also neighbors, and would never think of taking advantage of others during such disruptive times, these circumstances always require an extra sense of vigilance and preparation,” Attorney General Schneiderman wrote in an open letter to vendors released on Oct. 28. “As Attorney General, it is my responsibility to enforce the price gouging law, and while my hope is that I will not need to do so, my office is certainly prepared.”

Any New Yorkers suspected price gouging can report to the AG’s office here: www.ag.ny.gov/questions-comments-attorney-general-eric-t-schneiderman

The letter is addressed to vendors, retailers, and suppliers in New York state, including supermarkets, delis, and taxi drivers.

“New Yorkers have always been at their best when facing adversity, and I am confident that we will live up to that standard throughout this hurricane,” Schneiderman said in the letter.

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12:24 p.m. Monday — Mayor Bloomberg: Stay off the Streets

While speaking to New Yorkers from Brooklyn this morning Mayor Michael Bloomberg told residents to stay off the streets.

“It’s just dangerous to be out on the streets when the wind is this high,” said Bloomberg via live feed from the headquarters of the Office of Emergency Management.

If you do go out, Bloomberg said, “Keep your eyes and ears open, get your business done, and get back inside as quickly as you can.”

Check on your neighbors and stay off the beaches, he added.

Schools will be closed again on Tuesday, the mayor said. There is no timetable for public transit to begin running again.

About 3,100 New Yorkers, bringing 73 pets, have come into the 76 shelters, which are located citywide. The shelters have 16,000 beds in total.

About half of the people have evacuated from public housing in Zone A, which is made up of multiple areas of low-lying ground, estimated Bloomberg.

Beaches will likely suffer “severe erosion” as storm surges move in tonight between 6 p.m. and 10:30 p.m., said Bloomberg. The surges will be up to 12 feet high, with the highest expected in Lower Manhattan.

“The greatest danger posed by Sandy is the coastal storm surge,” said Bloomberg.

Around the city, sanitation workers have picked up thousands of pounds of refuse and will be on 12 hour shifts on Tuesday. Park employees are fielding calls about downed limbs and the like. All public hospital emergency rooms are open, while patients that don’t need critical care have been released from hospitals.

U.S. Senator Charles Schumer spoke at the press conference and said New York State will apply for federal emergency funds soon. Funds were received as quickly as a month after Hurricane Irene for some projects.

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11:40 a.m. Monday — Bloomberg Public Address on Now

Tune into Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s public address here.

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11:24 a.m. Monday — Tourists and Residents Experience Pre-Hurricane Storminess

Lower Manhattan residents are waiting for Hurricane Sandy while tourists wander around the area and police removed people from of Battery Park.

“We can’t prevent a hurricane. The only thing we can do is stay at home and wait for it to happen … even though I am not following my own advice now,” said Denilson Tavares, who lives five blocks away. When the hurricane gets closer, he plans on going home, recording video, and putting it on YouTube.

Glauber Santos, a resident of Brazil who is visiting New York for the first time, said it is exciting to be around the water and see what’s happening.“And I’ll have something to tell my friends,” he added.

Meanwhile, NYPD officers were becoming more urgent in trying to get people to leave the area, according to dispatches from Epoch Times reporter Kristen Meriwether.

Water begins spilling onto land in Battery Park. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

Water begins spilling onto land in Battery Park. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

“The mayor has issued a mandatory evacuation of this zone,” said one police office through a loudspeaker at Battery Park. “You must exit the park.”

The only vehicles on the road are cabs and police cars, and about 10 officers were at the park around 11 a.m.

Meriwether reports that the wind and rain are starting to pick up in the area. Also, water is beginning to surge onto land.

Surges of up to 11.7 feet are expected later tonight around 8 p.m.

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11:07 a.m. – Gov. Cuomo Delivers Hurricane Update

New York City is expected to see the worst effects of Hurricane Sandy around 8 p.m. Monday evening, when storm surges could reach as high as 11.7 feet in total.

New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo speaks at a press conference on Oct. 29 to prepare for Hurricane Sandy. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times)

New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo speaks at a press conference on Oct. 29 to prepare for Hurricane Sandy. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times)

In comparison, total surges during Tropical Storm Irene were 9.5 feet. The record is during Hurricane Donna, with surges at 10.5 feet.

“Do not underestimate this storm,” said Gov. Andrew Cuomo, speaking from his New York City office. “They’re talking about surges that we haven’t seen before.”

Cuomo said the government doesn’t want to overprepare but “you really don’t want to be underprepared either.”

“When things go bad like this, they go really bad,” he added.

Officials gave the approximately 40 minute briefing at 10 a.m., discussing steps taken to prepare for the storm.

At Lenox Terminal at 148th Street, an example of the preparations taken by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. (MTA New York City Transit/Leonard Wiggins)

At Lenox Terminal at 148th Street, an example of the preparations taken by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. (MTA New York City Transit/Leonard Wiggins)

Joseph Lhota, head of the MTA, said the shut down of the subway system is, in part, to protect the electronic signaling system and switches. If salt water comes into contact with the equipment, it could be destructive.

“The corrosion that could come from there is significant,” Lhota said. “The general ability to run the system and to keep it safe is in jeopardy.”

Because of this the Holland Tunnel and the newly named Hugh L. Carey Tunnel will close at 2 p.m. Monday. Bridges will remain open for the time being.

Cuomo said despite most calling the preparation for the past storm, Hurricane-turned-Tropical Storm Irene, an overpreperation, the storm actually “wreaked havoc in people’s lives.”

The difference was, instead of the damage hitting downstate New York, including New York City as projected, Irene damaged other sections of the state. The damage projections for Sandy are once again mostly for downstate, principally Long Island and New York City, and principally the low-lying areas such as Lower Manhattan’s outer ring and Coney Island.

The whole state is still preparing, however, for potential impact.

An additional 1,000 National Guard personnel have been called up, following the call-up of 1,000 on Sunday. The state and utility providers are working to bring in utility workers, but because so many states are being affected by the storm, that is proving difficult, said Cuomo.

“You are going to see states in competition for resources,” he said.

Updates will continue throughout the day, said Cuomo.

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10:44 a.m. — Battery Park Getting Stormy

A man watches the waves in New York Harbor from Battery Park during the arrival of Hurricane Sandy on Oct. 29 in New York City. The core of Sandy's force is supposed to hit the New York area Monday night. (Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

A man watches the waves in New York Harbor from Battery Park during the arrival of Hurricane Sandy on Oct. 29 in New York City. The core of Sandy's force is supposed to hit the New York area Monday night. (Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

Visitors from London, Jo Challenor and Alex Fouracre, were at Battery Park Monday morning, surveying the pre-hurricane scene.

Hurricane Sandy will be the first they have experienced.

“When they shut down subway we knew it’s going to be bad,” said Challenor. She said they’ll probably spend the rest of the day in their hotel.

“If they were unprepared they would have shot themselves in foot,” said Fouracre.

The couple will not be able to fly out until Thursday due to airport closures.

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10:26 a.m. — Latest NOAA Weather Update

Summary of 8 a.m. weather alert from the National Hurricane Center of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

-- Hurricane Sandy is moving North-Northwest and accelerating
--”Expected to bring life-threatening storm surge and coastal hurricane winds plus heavy Appalachian snows.”

Location: About 310 miles south and sooutheast of Atlantic City, New Jersey and about 265 miles southeast of New York City.

Hurricane Sandy moving at almost 20 miles per hour. A turn toward the Northwest is expected later Monday morning, followed by a turn toward the west. Center of Sandy is slated to move over the coast of the Mid-Atlantic states this evening.

--Tropical Storm warning in effect for North of Surf City to Duck North Carolina
--Pamlico and Albemarle Sounds
--Bermuda

Maximum winds near Hurricane Sandy remain near 85 miles per hour.

Hurricane-force winds extending outward from eye of hurricane up to 175 miles. Tropical storm winds happening along the coasts of Southern New Jersey, Delaware, and in Eastern Virgina, and as far inland as the Chesapeake Bay.

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9:51 a.m. Monday — Stock Markets Closed

Benches underwater at Gantry State Park in Long Island City, Zone A. (Councilmember Jimmy van Bramer's Twitter)

Benches underwater at Gantry State Park in Long Island City, Zone A. (Councilmember Jimmy van Bramer's Twitter)

Downtown Manhattan will be extra quiet Monday as the New York stock markets are closed. A few securities firm’s buildings that are headquartered Downtown are also shut, including: Goldman Sachs, AMEX, and others).

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9:45 a.m. Monday — The Day Ahead

Governor Andrew Cuomo will address New Yorkers at 10:15 a.m. at 40th Street and 3rd Avenue. Cuomo will also speak in Queens at 1 p.m. and in Nassau County at 3 p.m.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg will speak from the Office of Emergency Management headquarters in Brooklyn at 11:30 a.m.

Meanwhile, we will take a look at what is happening throughout the city as well as in other states such as North Carolina, Maryland, and Pennsylvania.

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11:48 p.m Sunday — Water Dam to Hold Off Surges Into Penn Station

MTA workers install a water barrier to block any water that may flood the tracks of the Long Island Rail Road on Oct. 28. Any flood water will then fall into a drainage system below the water barrier. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times)

MTA workers install a water barrier to block any water that may flood the tracks of the Long Island Rail Road on Oct. 28. Any flood water will then fall into a drainage system below the water barrier. (Benjamin Chasteen/The Epoch Times)

In anticipation of a high storm surge, officials from Long Island Railroad deployed a water dam at the West Side Train Storage Yard late Sunday night to protect Penn Station and the East River Tunnels.

The rubberized bladder will be filled with 32,000 gallons of water over five hours. Once fully deployed it will run the 90-foot length of the passageway and stand five feet tall.

“This design is specifically for what’s called ‘the storm of the century,’” said Sam Zambuto, MTA spokesman.

Water from a surge will stop at the bladder and be forced down grates to high capacity pumps below ground. Zambuto said although they don’t use it often, the dam and drain system was designed and built with the yards in 1986.

The system was deployed with Hurricane Irene in 2011 and held water away from Penn Station.

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10:28 p.m. Sunday — Monday Announcements

The next briefing from Mayor Michael Bloomberg on Hurricane Sandy will be at 11:30 a.m. Monday morning, the mayor’s office announced via Twitter. 

Other briefings will be held by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, the first at 10 a.m. at Ground Zero, the second at 1 p.m. in Queens, and the third at 3 p.m. in Nassau County. 

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10:25 p.m. Sunday — Photo Recap

The Seward High School shelter. People began gathering at this and the 75 other shelters on Sunday afternoon, after a mandatory evacuation was ordered of Zone A, which includes low-lying areas such as Coney Island, Battery Park, and the Rockaways. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

The Seward High School shelter. People began gathering at this and the 75 other shelters on Sunday afternoon, after a mandatory evacuation was ordered of Zone A, which includes low-lying areas such as Coney Island, Battery Park, and the Rockaways. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

 

Preparations began on Sunday afternoon. Sandbags, to disrupt potential flooding, are placed on the sidewalk on Broadway southeast of Bowling Green. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

Preparations began on Sunday afternoon. Sandbags, to disrupt potential flooding, are placed on the sidewalk on Broadway southeast of Bowling Green. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

 

Sandbags are piled in front of the entrance to 2 Broadway, the headquarters for MTA New York City Transit, MTA Bridges and Tunnels and MTA Capital Construction. This picture was taken at about 10:15 p.m. (MTA New York City Transit/Nelson Ortiz)

Sandbags are piled in front of the entrance to 2 Broadway, the headquarters for MTA New York City Transit, MTA Bridges and Tunnels and MTA Capital Construction. This picture was taken at about 10:15 p.m. (MTA New York City Transit/Nelson Ortiz)

9:57 p.m. Sunday — Deserted Transit Stations 

A deserted Penn Station on Oct. 28. (Metropolitan Transportation Authority/Aaron Donovan)

A deserted Penn Station on Oct. 28. (Metropolitan Transportation Authority/Aaron Donovan)

 

Grand Central Terminal closed on Oct. 28. (Metropolitan Transportation Authority/Aaron Donovan)

Grand Central Terminal closed on Oct. 28. (Metropolitan Transportation Authority/Aaron Donovan)

 

A man runs to catch the last Metro-North train, which departed at 7:10 p.m. (Metropolitan Transportation Authority/Aaron Donovan)

A man runs to catch the last Metro-North train, which departed at 7:10 p.m. (Metropolitan Transportation Authority/Aaron Donovan)

 

A digital sign above the Wall Street 2,3 Station alerts riders of the system shutdown, which began at 7 p.m. for subways. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

A digital sign above the Wall Street 2,3 Station alerts riders of the system shutdown, which began at 7 p.m. for subways. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

 

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7:57 p.m. Sunday — Few Businesses Remain Open, Streets Emptying Out

Trader Joe's shut down at 5 p.m. on Sunday evening and will be closed on Monday and Tuesday. (Zachary Stieber/The Epoch Times)

Trader Joe's shut down at 5 p.m. on Sunday evening and will be closed on Monday and Tuesday. (Zachary Stieber/The Epoch Times)

Businesses across New York City are shutting down in preparation for Hurricane Sandy, which is expected to hit before midnight Sunday.

Lower Manhattan has been like a ghost town since Sunday afternoon, with many businesses closed and few residents seen.

Yet even outside of Zone A, the mandatory evacuation areas, many businesses—particularly chains—have shut their doors, to the dismay of passersby.

Along Sixth Avenue in Midtown, Duane Reade, Starbucks, Chipotle, Best Buy, Staples, McDonalds, and Trader Joe’s were closed by 7 p.m.

A slew of small businesses and a handful of street vendors remained open and busy.

“We’re open 24 hours unless the weather gets really bad,” said Ali, manager of Star Gourmet Deli and Pizza at the intersection of 27th and 6th. We’ll be open tomorrow unless the weather gets really bad. We’re not scared because it’s just like last time. A little rain is nothing. If it gets bad we’ll close down the shop and sleep in the basement.”

Employees at three other delis in the area said they would remain open.

“We don’t think it’s serious,” said Patinder Singh, a manager at 876 Market on 6th Ave.. The market will be open Monday and Tuesday “unless the weather gets really bad and there is flooding.”

Shoppers in CVS on Sunday. (Zachary Stieber/The Epoch Times)

Shoppers in CVS on Sunday. (Zachary Stieber/The Epoch Times)

CVS was the only chain store open. A manager said he expects the store to close at 7 a.m. Monday until the end of the storm.

Shoppers often walked up to the doors of the businesses, mistakenly thinking they were open. Signs were posted on the doors of all the businesses except for Duane Reade, which appeared open at first glance.

Meanwhile, the city’s Department of Small Business Services urged businesses to secure important records, including lists of employees, key customers and clients, and suppliers, and prepare for possible loss of utilities by having supplies such as battery-powered lights.

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6:19 p.m. Sunday — Lower Manhattan, Wall Street Area ‘Like a Ghost Town’

The front of the New York Stock Exchange has a short wall of sand bags. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

The front of the New York Stock Exchange has a short wall of sand bags. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

In Lower Manhattan, where many buildings fall under Zone A (the mandatory evacuation area), businesses are closed and sandbags are in front of buildings.

The area “is like a ghost town,” says Epoch Times reporter Kristen Meriwether, who surveyed the area in the late afternoon.

A few street vendors were still out. One sold replicas of the famous bull statue near the statue. A halel food truck, parked at the intersection of William Street and Wall Street, had a line form in front of it.

Workers stabilizing the New York Stock Exchange building on Sunday afternoon. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

Workers stabilizing the New York Stock Exchange building on Sunday afternoon. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

“From where we are from, this storm is nothing,” said Mdali Alif, 15, of Bangledesh, who was working in the truck. Alif and his fellow employees planned to leave at 7 p.m., but thought all the measures being taken were “stupid.”

Subway stops had plywood surrounding them, prepared for the 7 p.m. closure. Few residents were seen yet a fair amount of tourists still wandered around.
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4:47 p.m. Sunday – Senior Meteorologist Says Hurricane Sandy ‘One of the most extraordinary’

Stu Ostro, senior meteorologist with The Weather Channel, says Hurricane Sandy will “will occupy a place in the annals of weather history as one of the most extraordinary to have affected the United States.”

Ostro said people in the path of the storm “need to heed the threat it poses with utmost urgency.”

In this handout GOES satellite image provided by NASA, Hurricane Sandy, pictured at 1:40 p.m. ET, churns off the east coast as it moves north on Oct. 28, in the Atlantic Ocean. Sandy, which has already claimed over 50 lives in the Caribbean is predicted to bring heavy winds and floodwaters to the mid-Atlantic region. (NASA via Getty Images)

In this handout GOES satellite image provided by NASA, Hurricane Sandy, pictured at 1:40 p.m. ET, churns off the east coast as it moves north on Oct. 28, in the Atlantic Ocean. Sandy, which has already claimed over 50 lives in the Caribbean is predicted to bring heavy winds and floodwaters to the mid-Atlantic region. (NASA via Getty Images)

Among his tips in an online post are taking evacuation orders seriously; preparing for downed trees and damage to buildings (by staying inside and in the most interior portion of the building); and knowing that you could be without power for a long time while also remembering the potential danger from carbon monoxide poisoning with improper use of a generator.

Hurricane Sandy has swept up through the Caribbean Islands a portion of the Bahamas, and caused “severe erosion” to some Florida beaches. Now, says Ostra, it is poised to stroke the Northeastern United States.

“Already, there are ominous signs: trees down in eastern North Carolina, the first of countless that will be blown over or uprooted along the storm’s path; and coastal flooding in Florida, North Carolina and Virginia, these impacts occurring despite the center of circulation being so far offshore, an indication of Sandy’s exceptional size and potency,” Ostra wrote.

The National Hurricane Center has the center of the hurricane mapped at West of the Carolinas as of 2 p.m.

Ostra says “A meteorologically mind-boggling combination of ingredients is coming together.”

“One of the largest expanses of tropical storm (gale) force winds on record with a tropical or subtropical cyclone in the Atlantic or for that matter anywhere else in the world; a track of the center making a sharp left turn in direction of movement toward New Jersey in a way that is unprecedented in the historical database, as it gets blocked from moving out to sea by a pattern that includes an exceptionally strong ridge of high pressure aloft near Greenland; a “warm-core” tropical cyclone embedded within a larger, nor’easter-like circulation; and eventually tropical moisture and arctic air combining to produce heavy snow in interior high elevations. This is an extraordinary situation, and I am not prone to hyperbole.”

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4:48 p.m. Sunday-- Google Releases Hurricane Sandy Evacuation Map

Google has created a map specifically for Hurricane Sandy, showing evacuation zones and shelter locations. The interactive zone finder from the city’s Office of Emergency Management has high traffic to the point of 20 minutes delays, so this map might be more useful in finding out whether you are in Zone A and should evacuate.

Note that only the orange areas are considered to be flood risk areas.

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4:30 p.m. Sunday – Mayor Bloomberg Warns Zone A Residents to Evacuate Immediately

Mayor Michael Bloomberg giving an update on hurricane preparations at Seward High School, the site of one of the 76 shelters in New York City, Oct. 28. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

Mayor Michael Bloomberg giving an update on hurricane preparations at Seward High School, the site of one of the 76 shelters in New York City, Oct. 28. (Kristen Meriwether/The Epoch Times)

Mayor Michael Bloomberg said in his second Hurricane Sandy update on Sunday that New Yorkers in Zone A should evacuate immediately, either finding family or friends to stay with or locating one of the 76 shelters around the city in public schools. Bloomberg spoke at Seward High School, the site of one of the shelters.

“The most important thing I can say right now is if you live in Zone A, evacuate,” said Bloomberg. He said evacuations other than Zone A are not expected.

Zone A includes Battery Park and most of the land near the water in Lower Manhattan and lower Midtown; Brooklyn’s Western coast including Red Hook and North Greenpoint; and the Rockaways and Coney Island areas.

The map showing the evacuation areas also shows locations of the shelters (pdf).

Within Zone A areas are about 25,000 public housing residents, who are encouraged to leave especially because elevators, heat, and hot water within the buildings will be shut down starting at 7 p.m.

New York Public Housing Authority staff have “knocked on every door and did everything they possibly could” to alert the residents, said Bloomberg.

NYPD officers have been going around Zone A areas and broadcasting evacuation orders through loudspeakers.

Meanwhile, neighbors can help each other out and there are no plans for evacuating Rikers Island or closing bridges or tunnels at the moment.

New York Harbor will be closing Sunday night and cruise ships meant to dock there have been diverted until Monday and Tuesday.

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3:34 p.m. Sunday — Emergency Preparedness

A Duane Reade store on the Upper West Side stocks up on water as residents flock to prepare for Hurricane Sandy. (Charlotte Cuthbertson/The Epoch Times)

A Duane Reade store on the Upper West Side stocks up on water as residents flock to prepare for Hurricane Sandy. (Charlotte Cuthbertson/The Epoch Times)

Hurricane Sandy “is expected to lose its characteristics as a tropical cyclone and take on the structure of a wintertime low-pressure area,” according to the National Hurricane Center in a release on Oct. 27.

Yet this doesn’t mean Sandy will not be destructive.

The latest update on Sunday at 2 p.m. pegs Sandy as “expected to bring life-threatening storm surge flooding to the mid-Atlantic coast,” including Long Island and New York Harbor, according to the center.

The primary difference between a topical cyclone and a wintertime cyclone is the energy source, according to the Hurricane Center. Tropical cyclones feed off heat from the ocean while wintertime cyclones mostly get energy from temperature contrasts. These differences manifest in wintertime cyclones having “a broader wind field and more complex distributions of rain and snow,” according to the center.

Storm surges from 6 to 11 feet in New York City on Monday during high tide are projected by the National Weather Service.

The center of Sandy is currently east of the Carolinas and Sandy has maximum wind speeds of 75 miles per hour. The projected path of the hurricane, seen in the graphic, has it hitting Delaware, Maryland, and Pennsylvania through Wednesday morning, and South and West New York soon after.

After that, Sandy is projected to turn into a rain storm moving to the Northeast United States and Canada.

Emergency aid has already been made available to the state of Maryland because of damage from Hurricane Sandy, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

Read how to prepare for a hurricane.

Tips from FEMA
- Get some extra cash out at the ATM today. If the power goes out, banks/ATMs may be offline for some time.
- Make a plan for how you’ll keep your cell phone charged if you lose power for several days. Picking up a solar or hand-crank charger for your phone is a good idea.
- High winds are expected across a wide area (as the image above shows). Protect your home/business—cover windows, clean gutters, trim trees.
- Get to the store today for emergency supplies—water, nonperishable food, batteries, flashlight, etc.

President Obama released a video on Oct. 27 asking Americans to help each other.

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3:27 p.m. Subways, Buses, Ferries, and Airports to Close

Transit systems throughout the New York metropolitan area are shutting down service on Sunday due to Hurricane Sandy.

Most prominently, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority is shutting down the subway system and commuter rail systems (Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North) beginning at 7 p.m. Sunday.

Buses will cease operating from 9 p.m. Sunday. Access-a-ride, a service for disabled persons, will stop at 5 p.m. Sunday.

The East River Ferry is closed until further notice. Staten Island Ferry will operate until 8 p.m. on Sunday from St. George Terminal and until 8:30 p.m. from Whitehall Terminal, after which service will be suspended until further notice.

The Staten Island Railway will try to continue operations until the ferry suspends service, so no customers are stranded at St. George Terminal, but could shut down “if conditions are deemed unsafe,” according to Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office.

Meanwhile, the PATH system, which runs in both New York to New Jersey, will be shut down beginning 11:59 p.m. on Oct. 28.

“The PATH system is being closed to passengers so that trains and stations can be secured in advance of the storm, and protected against damage from high winds and water,” according to an email from the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which manages the system. “PATH service will resume as soon as conditions permit.”

The authority also controls the area’s five major airports. All major airlines at those airports are expected to cease all flights starting Sunday night.

For stranded travelers, the authority is bringing in cots and other essentials, and at least one food vendor will remain open in all airport terminals around the clock throughout the storm.

The AirTrain systems at Newark and JFK airports will be shut down after 7 p.m. Sunday evening.

Bridges and tunnels in the area, which are managed by either the Port Authority and/or the MTA, haven’t been closed yet or had closures announced but the Port Authority expects to close the bridges it manages beginning Monday morning. The MTA said its seven bridges and two tunnels will remain open Sunday evening and no announcements have been made regarding Monday.

Amtrak announced Sunday afternoon that its Northeast Corridor trains and its Keystone trains for Oct. 29th are canceled.

Lastly, the Roosevelt Island Tram and Red Bus will continue until further notice, according to the island’s Operating Corporation.

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3 p.m. Sunday — Public Schools Closed on Monday

All public schools will be closed on Monday, Oct. 29 because of expected weather conditions from Hurricane Sandy, said Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott on Sunday.

All administrative offices will be open, however, according to the city’s Department of Education. The department has asked school staff assigned to a shelter site to report to that site.

A decision about opening schools on Tuesday will be made on Monday, but the hurricane is expected to get worse on Monday.

Private schools and universities throughout the state and city are also closing. Columbia University has canceled all classes and events on Monday, and non-essential personnel are not required to report to work.   

The School at Columbia University, an independent K through 8 school, will also be closed. Fordham Prep will also be closed on Monday, and will be closed on Tuesday if the New York City transit system is not running on Tuesday, which is up in the air but looks likely.

Other universities closing include all schools within the City University of New York system and New York University.

For a real time feed of private schools announcing their closings, visit http://www.nysais.org/

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2:45 p.m. Sunday — Updated Evacuation Zone Map Released By Mayor Bloomberg

People board up their business as Hurricane Sandy approaches on Oct. 28, in Rockaway Beach, Queens, New York City. Sandy, which has already claimed over 50 lives in the Caribbean is predicted to bring heavy winds and floodwaters to the mid-Atlantic region. (Allison Joyce/Getty Images)

People board up their business as Hurricane Sandy approaches on Oct. 28, in Rockaway Beach, Queens, New York City. Sandy, which has already claimed over 50 lives in the Caribbean is predicted to bring heavy winds and floodwaters to the mid-Atlantic region. (Allison Joyce/Getty Images)

The office of Mayor Michael Bloomberg released an updated evacuation zone map at 1 p.m. Sunday.

Bloomberg said in his late morning public address concerning Hurricane Sandy that evacuation is mandatory of Zone A areas (indicated in the map).

Many of the coastal areas around Lower- to Mid-Manhattan are indicated as evacuation zones, as well as areas along the Brooklyn coastline, Governors Island, the Rockaways, and Hamilton Beach.

“Let me stress: If you don’t evacuate… you’re not just putting your own life in danger; you are endangering the lives of first responders who may have to come in and rescue you,” Bloomberg said from City Hall. “And we hope you don’t face those kinds of dire situations, but you could.”

New Yorkers living in Zone A should contact relatives and friends and arrange a place to stay. Otherwise, 65 shelters are open around the city.

Find a shelter near you. http://gis.nyc.gov/oem/he/search.htm



  • http://www.facebook.com/chrisholehouse Christopher Holehouse

    Great blog.

  • http://www.facebook.com/TheKingofRedLions Roman Balmakov

    Thank you guys for the fantastic coverage!

  • Adryahn Hawkins

    Nice, concise timeline !!!

  • okconstructionscorp

    This is the best explanation I’ve seen so far on construction. Much more in depth than other post yet you’ve managed to make it really clear and concise


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