Hey everyone! It has been very busy for me in the past few weeks.
Before The storm:
On October 27th, two days before Sandy was set to start hitting Long Island, people started realizing this was not a storm to mess around with. People were already evacuating, in communities such as Port Jefferson, Fire Island, Massapequa, Long Beach and Far Rockaway. Areas South of Sunrise Highway in Nassau were to evacuate, and South of Montauk Highway in Suffolk. Shelters opened at Nassau Community College, Locust Valley High school. Levittown Memorial High and SUNY Old Westbury. In Suffolk, shelters were opened at Brentwood, Sachem East and Hampton Bays High Schools. Most schools on Long Island closed on October 29th, including many universities, such as Molloy, CW Post, Adelphi and Hofstra. Sandy had not done much to the Carolina Coast as it swirled out in the Atlantic, but that did not mean LI should let its guard down. In Jamaica, a death was blamed on Sandy, when a mudslide caused the death of an old man. The Bahama’s were not so beautiful before and after Sandy, which caused many Caribbean vacationers to put their vacations on hault. The US Stock exchange was closed for 2 days and NYC Public Transportation was haulted for several more days, as well as NYC Public Schools (for five days). Despite the incoming storm, a Norwegian Cruise Ship left NY Harbor heading for Bermuda on Sunday October 28th, a day before the storm.
During The Storm:
Sandy arrived, as expected, on Monday October 29th. During that afternoon, it brought wind gusts as high as 60-70mph in Nassau and Central and Western Suffolk. Even with these high winds gusts, the storm was well off The NJ Coast, and wouldn’t arrive in Southern NJ till the evening. This was a superstorm, because it brought surge into The South Shores of LI and NYC just as High Tide arrived. The Full Moon did not make things any better. Up to 14 feet of water was found in some areas of Nassau and Suffolk. Luckily, many people did evacuate, but some willingly rode out the storm in their Flood-Prone homes. In Breezy Point, a fire started in one of the houses, and the high winds spread the fire to 30 houses. The most power outages reported by LIPA was 937,000 at its peak, which is about 94% of LIPA’s customers.
After The Storm:
Long Island braced for a wild ride in cleanup, and still is. After waking up on November 1st, when most LIers had no power, the damage was unthinkable. In total, $32 billion dollars in damage was reported in NY by Governor Cuomo, $13 billion dollars of which was on Long Island. The beaches were eroded to shreds. Almost all homes South of the southernmost highways were destroyed. Marsh homes were lifted and crushed off of there stilts. 13 people died on Long Island, of the about 235 people dead along the East Coast. Recovery efforts began aroung Long Island. Another problem boiled: Gas Shortages. People were starting to get frustrated with the Shortage of gas. Cuomo was among one of the people victim’s looked towards for answered. People began to become frustrated, and gas lines grew everywhere. Some even resorted to pulling out weapons at gas stations as a threat. In South Shore communities, looters posed as fake ConEd workers going into people’s homes, while others siphoned gas out of vehicles. Some people were left in the dark for 2 weeks. A Nor’easter threatened to stop recovery efforts on LI again, and it seemed as if LI would never catch a break. On November 13th, Michael Harvey, COO of Lipa, stepped down. Since his resign, about 5 other high-ranking LIPA officials have stepped down in favor of many Long Islanders. Many schools stayed close for 6-7 weekdays, some for more, in places such as Long Beach, Island Park, Hewlett-Woodmere, Lawrence, Oceanside, Massapequa, Lindenhurst and Huntington. School districts are still pending an answer from the State on if 5 days of the of the hurricane will be excused, but many schools have already cancelled off-days during the school year.