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Tri-State Area Hunkers Down for Sandy: What You Need to Know

Monday, October 29, 2012

It may have been downgrade from a hurricane, but regional officials warned of major flooding and days of disruption as Sandy swings toward the East Coast Monday evening. The threatening rains and high winds forced leaders throughout the area to call for evacuations, to open shelters and to shut down mass transit.

Forecasters say the center of Sandy made landfall on the Jersey shore, just before 8 p.m.

The National Hurricane Center said early Monday that the storm has top sustained winds of almost 80 mph.

There are about 2,000 National Guard troops that have been deployed statewide, including 200 in New York City. About 1,000 will be dispatched throughout Long Island.

Hurricane Sandy's storm surge, estimated at 6 to 11 feet, reached almost 12 feet at Kings Point, NY.

There are more than 7 million power outages as of 8:30 p.m. in New York, most of them in New York City, Long Island and the northern suburbs.

Con Edison has preemptively shutdown some of its underground networks in lower Manhattan. The company's CEO said earlier it would likely be the two networks that cover the area between Broadway and the East River, south of the Brooklyn Bridge. Part of Brighton Beach by Coney Island could also be affected. About 997,000 customers are without power in NYC, Long Island and the northern suburbs.

Con Ed is reporting more than 346,000 customers without power.

In New Jersey, over 1 million customers are without power. Jersey Central Power and Light is reporting outages for more than 664, customers. PSE&G is reporting about 400,000 customers without power due to increasing winds and heavy rain.

LIPOWER is reporting more than 620,000 people are without electricity.

In Connecticut almost half a million customers are without power. Connecticut Light and Power reports 476,000 customers are without electricity Monday evening. More than 115,000 United Illuminating customers are also without power.

Mayor Bloomberg said all East River bridge crossings will close at 7 p.m. Monday evening.

The George Washington Bridge, Throgs Neck Bridge, Bronx-Whitestone Bridge, Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, Henry Hudson Bridge, Marine Parkway-Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge, Cross Bay Veterans Memorial Bridge will all close at 7p.m. Monday evening. The Robert F. Kennedy/Triborough Bridge was closed as of 7:30 p.m due to 100 mph winds.

Gov. Cuomo said the Staten Island crossings – Bayonne Bridge, Goethals Bridge, and Outerbridge Crossing – are all closed.

The Queens-Midtown tunnel has also been closed.

The Harlem River crossings remain open as of Monday evening.

The Tappan Zee Bridge will be closed as of 4 p.m. Monday. There is an immediate ban on all trucks, buses, motorcycles on the bridge. Bridges north of the Tappan Zee will remain open for the time being.

New York City public schools will be closed Monday and Tuesday.

The New York Stock Exchange will be closed Monday and Tuesday.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie announced that state offices would be closed on Tuesday, as well as Monday.

New York City's transit service began suspending service at 7PM last night for all subway, Metro North and Long Island Railroad service beginning. All city bus service was shut down at 9 pm.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg ordered residents in low-lying areas to evacuate.  About 370,000 people live in these evacuation zones.

The city has also opened 76 shelters, where there are about 3,100 people and 73 pets riding out the storm.

Staten Island and East River Ferries are suspended until further notice.

PATH train service is shut down until further notice.

NYC airports are open, but air carriers are not operating. The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey said Monday that travelers shouldn't even try to go to Kennedy, Newark Liberty, LaGuardia and Stewart airports.

Rail service on AirTrain JFK and AirTrain Newark has been suspended until further notice.

Amtrak has cancelled service through Tuesday in the northeast. Amtrak said passengers who have paid but who didn't travel because of the service disruption can receive a refund or a voucher for future travel.

There are mandatory evacuations for Long Island's barrier islands. 

Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano has also called for a mandatory evacuation of storm surge areas.  He said the county would see “record tidal surge.”

This includes areas south of Sunrise Highway, from the Queens line to Rockville Centre and South of Merrick Road, from Rockville Centre to the Nassau-Suffolk border.

There are shelters open at Nassau Community College, Levittown Memorial High School, Locust Valley High School and SUNY Old Westbury.  and a voluntary evacuation for known flood zones on Long Island.

Parks: All city parks are closed.

Sanitation: The NYC Department of Sanitation said it would still collect grabage/recycling Monday (weather permitting).

Dept of Corrections: Mayor says inmates have not been moved from Rikers Island

Homeless: Department of Homeless Services has enhanced street outreach SUN to encourage people on the street to seek shelter. Street outreach will continue during the storm, safety permitting.

Aging: Senior Centers will be closed early on Monday and will remain closed on Tuesday.

Film: All outdoor filming permits are being suspended for tomorrow. No city-authorized filming will take place.

Libraries: The public library systems that cover all five boroughs will be closed Monday. That’s the New York, Queens and Brooklyn public library systems.

Harbor: The Coast Guard has closed New York Harbor, and all cruise ships originally scheduled for arrival Monday and Tuesday have been diverted

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Comments [4]

Neil from Little Silver, New Jersey

After moving here from the UK 2.5 years ago one of the first things to strike me was the preponderance of overhead power lines in built up urban areas. Given the regular impact of hurricane/tropical storms: why does the upgrade of a dated and inadequate power infrastructure to a subterranean system never seem to generate a wider discourse? Or are people tired of asking?!

Oct. 29 2012 09:43 PM
William from Manhattan

Re Governor Christie's wise comment during his noon Monday address: "If it looks stupid, it is stupid." If only the governor would extend those words of wisdom to those in his own party who seek to "starve the beast" and deny resources to the federal government to protect us in times of emergency, and rebuild afterwards. I note the governor didn't hesitate to request federal emergency funds to help meet this emergency. After all, to refuse federal assistance for the sake of ideological purity would look stupid and be stupid. I say it also looks stupid and is stupid for the governor and his party to deny the proper role of government - local, state and federal - to prepare us and protect us, and to rebuild. A modest proposal? A memo to Republican public officials nationwide - if you want federal emergency funds, tear up your pledges to Grover Norquist during primetime on Fox News. Otherwise, wait until taxpaying states with rational governors and members of congress get theirs and maybe you can apply for what's left over. Tea Party-ers, write to your public officials now. Demand that they not request federal funds for anything, ever, and refuse any federal assistance that is offered. Enough is enough. Seriously, if you're going to talk the talk, walk the walk. Now is the time for all good men, etc.

Oct. 29 2012 12:41 PM
Kass in Bklyn from Brooklyn

I found Brian Lehrer's coverage this morning to be very informative indeed, and just wanted to comment that during the height of this situation later today, such rolling coverage would be a true public service. The TV stations are nearly unwatchable.

Oct. 29 2012 12:35 PM
Christine from Westchester

Maybe someone can explain two behaviors that I don't understand that occur in this sort of emergency:

1.) How is it that people don't have emergency supplies already (for every storm / emergency)? You don't already have water, batteries, flashlights, generators if that's something do-able where you live? You don't have enough food in your house to last 2-3 days?

2.) When you're told it's dangerous, evacuation is mandatory, you don't get out? My view is, if you want to put yourself in harms way, fine> I wouldn't look for rescue or complain when you're injured or worse. Get out. Don't be stupid.

Oct. 29 2012 09:27 AM

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