Sandy leaves millions without power; 16 dead
Millions of people across the eastern seaboard waited for sunrise Tuesday morning to see the full extent of the damage wrought by megastorm Sandy. An estimated 6.2 million people in seven states were without power across the East and at least 16 deaths had been confirmed. President Barack Obama has declared New York and Long Island federal disaster areas.
The disaster declaration makes federal funding available to residents and businesses in the affected areas, which bore the brunt of the sea surge from the superstorm. Jeff Masters, meteorology director for Weather Underground, a private forecasting service, called the storm surges some of the highest ever recorded.
Officials blamed at least 16 deaths on the storm — five in New York, three each in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, two in Connecticut, and one each in Maryland, North Carolina and West Virginia. Three of the victims were children, one just 8 years old. Sandy also killed 69 people in the Caribbean.
In New York City, the city was shut down, cut off and in many places dark. A 13-foot storm surge, three feet above the previous record, caused flooding and widespread power outages. The city’s subway system was shut down due to flooding. The Holland Tunnel, which connects New York to New Jersey, and a tunnel between Brooklyn and Manhattan, were both closed. High winds forced the closure of the Brooklyn Bridge, the George Washington Bridge, the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge and several other spans.