Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. Earth Science News .

A month after superstorm Sandy, suffering lingers
by Staff Writers
Far Rockaway, New York (AFP) Nov 30, 2012

A month after historic megastorm Sandy tore through his beachside neighborhood in New York's Rockaways, Gary Hamilton still has no electricity, heating or hot water.

The storm, a confluence of a hurricane and a nor'easter that hit the New York area starting on October 29, killed more than 110 people in the United States and caused an estimated billions of dollars in damage.

When the storm was at its worst, the first floor of Hamilton's home was flooded with more than three feet (a meter) of water. A month later, he could be found ripping out the floor of his still "unlivable" house.

"We lost almost everything," said the 50-year-old.

He works every minute he can on getting it back into shape and is not sleeping much.

Hamilton estimated the process could take six months, saying "we've been promised a lot of help, but we'll see what we get."

But he is happy to be alive -- and said he's not moving anywhere, after 38 years of living in the neighborhood.

"It's nice here," he insisted.

At the house next door, four young Mormon missionaries were pulling out rubble and piling it in the street. They were working on cutting out the walls from a basement that was completely soaked by the storm.

The yard was filled with a giant pile of debris that had once been the family's belongings.

"I haven't stopped since Sandy," said one of the missionaries, Steven Bush, of his volunteer clean-up efforts, though he noted that "many people have left."

Those who remain survive as best they can. With disaster relief assistance, they stay warm with blankets and get light from generators.

A number of rescue centers are still open in the area, run by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), churches, and the city.

Although the neighborhood has more recently attracted some of New York's younger and more affluent denizens, most of the 130,000 residents made up "one of the poorest communities in America," even before Sandy, said Les Mullings, pastor of the Nazarene Church of Far Rockaway.

"It is improving, gradually," Mullings said of the current situation. "But progress is slow. It is frustrating, very frustrating."

Under normal circumstances, his church gave food and other assistance to around 500 people a week. Lately, it has been helping 2,500 a day.

In front of his church, two trucks distribute hot meals. Inside is a third distribution point. And along the sidewalk a few meters (feet) away, a long line of people, mainly women, wait patiently despite the biting cold in the hopes of filling shopping carts with clothes, blankets and cleaning supplies.

"We get here in the morning at eight o'clock. By 7:30, and the line is already here," sighed the pastor.

-- Tons of rubble --

"People are still without power, still without heat. People are still in shelters, families still away, kids are still out of school. They have to be shifted to other schools. There is no gas," Mullings lamented.

"From this community we have 600 people in shelters."

Carla Gomez came to the church for a blanket and a hot meal. These days, she sleeps at a friend's place.

But that's not a long-term solution.

"I want a place where to live, where to cook," she said. "My house was completely destroyed."

A few miles (kilometers) to the west, bulldozers and tractor-trailers tackle an immense mountain of thousands of tons of rubble, piled on a spot that was, until recently, a beach parking lot.

"It's crazy. But it's better. Before, last week, it was twice that," said Miguel, one of the workers.

On the beach, gutted houses, folded in half, sit behind red signs that warn: "Unsafe area. Do not enter or occupy."

And on Beach Street, curious onlookers creep slowly, hoping to frame the perfect photograph of the sun setting over the devastated landscape.

Through the gaping facade of a destroyed house, a still-made bed, covers carefully pulled up, is clearly visible.

A month has passed since Sandy blew through, but little has changed.


Related Links
Bringing Order To A World Of Disasters
A world of storm and tempest
When the Earth Quakes

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Haiti opts for ID security program
Port Au Prince, Haiti (UPI) Nov 28, 2012
Haiti is investing in a high-tech security system aimed at solving chronic and costly problems with the country's chaotic civil and identity registry systems that worsened after the 2010 earthquake. The temblor's aftermath saw unscrupulous gangs engaging in crimes that ranged from theft of relief supplies, state funds and materials to various kinds of ID fraud aimed at extracting donati ... read more

Pakistan landslides kill three soldiers, bury rescuers

A month after superstorm Sandy, suffering lingers

Fed official sees only slight GDP hit from Sandy

Haiti opts for ID security program

Schriever squadrons assure safe passage in space domain

Americans love (and hate) their mobile phones: survey

New York art museum to display video games

The music of the silks

Amid Egypt crisis, Addis pushes Nile dam

'Time running out' for Kiribati as seas rise: president

Overfishing threatens Pacific tuna: officials

Seas rising 60 percent faster than UN forecast: study

Adventurer to recreate Shackleton's Antarctic exploits

Adventurer to recreate Shackleton's Antarctic exploits

Ice Sheet Loss At Both Poles Increasing, Study Finds

Definitive study highlights polar ice melt

Hot springs in Alps make for luxury Swiss caviar

China, EU protect each others' asparagus and ham

The hungry caterpillar: Beware your enemy's enemy's enemy

Increasing Drought Stress Predicted to Challenge Vulnerable Hydraulic System of Plants

Deadly 2012 Atlantic storm season officially ends

Thousands in Philippines flee ahead of typhoon

Renewed flooding threatens Niger capital

NASA Study Could Improve Hurricane Strength Forecasts

S.Africa hunters try to clean up image

Ethiopia to stay in Somalia until AU takeover: PM

Algeria's ruling party eyes landslide in local elections

Madagascar to probe rights abuses by security forces

Long-held memory tenet challenged

A 3-D light switch for the brain

Scientists improve dating of early human settlement

Oldest home in Scotland unearthed

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement