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

New York desperately seeks evacuations as hurricane hits
by Staff Writers
New York (AFP) Oct 29, 2012

The Holland Tunnel is closed due to Hurricane Sandy, on October 29, 2012 in New York City. 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. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the closure of all New York City's bus, subway and commuter rail service as of Sunday evening. Photo courtesy AFP.

Powerful winds buckled a crane on a New York skyscraper, giving an alarming warning of the danger from Hurricane Sandy as authorities tried desperately to persuade people in high-risk areas to get to safety.

With power cuts already hitting as winds strengthened and sea levels rose, police toured flood-threatened districts of the New York region almost begging people to clear out. But tens of thousands of hurricane refuseniks resisted.

With America's biggest city at a near standstill ahead of a predicted storm surge of up to 11 feet (3.5 meters), police went to several towns and districts with loud speakers and special buses trying to persuade people to move.

Authorities issued a mandatory evacuation order for 375,000 people but the vast majority decided to brave out Sandy, which some experts said could be the most powerful storm in more than seven decades.

Only 3,000 people, with 73 pets, had moved into the 76 emergency shelters opened for the storm, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said.

Malcolm Smith, a Democratic member of the state senate, estimated that 80 percent of inhabitants of Rockaway Beach, a seaside town where flooding started before the hurricane made landfall, had decided to stay put.

"They need to pack up their families and move away," Smith said.

But Bloomberg said it may be too late however as wind speeds and seas rose.

"Conditions are deteriorating very rapidly and the window for getting out safely is closing," Bloomberg told a press conference. "It's getting too late to leave."

New York state governor Andrew Cuomo said the latest flood predictions were "troublesome" and criticized people who went to the beach to take pictures of the crashing waves.

Manhattan streets were mainly empty as rains fell and winds increased. The New York Stock Exchange ordered an emergency closure for the first time since the September 11, 2001 attacks. All subway trains and buses were halted at least until Wednesday.

Authorities ordered two of the main Manhattan road tunnels and nearly all bridges off the island to close as winds became more dangerous. New York state also called up an extra 1,000 National Guardsmen on top of 1,100 mobilized Sunday.

Gale force winds buckled a crane on top of a 90-story luxury apartment block which was left dangling as the storm intensified.

Police and fire services cleared streets and some other buildings around the building, close to Central Park, which was designed by award-winning French architect Christian de Portzamparc.

No casualties were immediately reported, though some witnesses said parts of the crane had fallen into the street from the 1,004-foot (306-meter) skyscraper, which is due to be finished next year.

Schools and landmark attractions such as the Empire State Building were all closed. Hardly a car ventured onto the streets.

Only the hardiest store-owners stayed open. Most supermarkets had been stripped of batteries, pocket lamps, bread and water amid widespread fears of power cuts.

David Blythe, an official with an international student exchange organization, lives in Brooklyn but booked himself into a Manhattan hotel. "I have meetings I could not miss," he said as he ate breakfast in one of the rare eateries open.

Albert Mustaj, a doorman at The Caroline, an elegant apartment block on 23rd Street, said all staff at the building had been asked to stay for three days. But he was not nervous. "I come from Montenegro, I've seen worse," he said.

Candace Ruland, a 67-year-old inhabitant of the Battery Park district, said she left for Hurricane Irene last year. "I went uptown and I had a nice dinner with a lot of wine. This year, I just decided to stay," she said.


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's toll from Sandy at 51, Cuba eyes cleanup
Port-Au-Prince (AFP) Oct 28, 2012
Hurricane Sandy's tear across the Caribbean left 51 people dead in Haiti, while another 15 people were still missing after the deadly storm, officials said Sunday. The earlier toll had reached 44 dead in the Americas' poorest nation, which was socked with heavy rains, driving winds and flooding in areas where thousands are in refugee camps. The deaths in Haiti, still recovering from a ca ... read more

Improving healthcare response in Haiti

US governors urge residents to heed Sandy warnings

New York desperately seeks evacuations as hurricane hits

Two missing as Sandy sinks tall ship HMS Bounty

Outdoor wear often coated in harmful chemicals: Greenpeace

French Magpie start-up leaches gold from water with modern alchemy

U.S. unveils new supercomputer

Google unveils large tablet, revamped Nexus lineup

Helping North America's marine protected areas adapt to a changing climate

Australia pumps $1.83 bln into food bowl river

Suez reports operating profit fall on delay to Melbourne water plant

Genetic Patterns of Deep-Sea Coral Provide Insights into Evolution of Marine Life

Biologists record increasing amounts of plastic litter in the Arctic deep sea

Opposite Behaviors? Arctic Sea Ice Shrinks, Antarctic Grows

Italian snow levels, glaciers retreating

New understanding of Antarctic's weight-loss

Gaps in border controls are related to alien insect invasions in Europe

Black rice and tea in Italy as China shows its green side

Honduran crocodile farm bets on skins' glam future

Formula unlocks secrets of cauliflower's geometry

Major earthquake off west coast of Canada, tsunami triggered

Italy minister wants quake ruling overturned

Hawaii rattled by tsunami warning after Canada quake

Tsunami hit Geneva in AD 563: scientists

Rwanda ex-army chief's refugee status questioned in S.Africa

Making transport a driver for development in Africa

Guinea-Bissau army arrests alleged coup leader

Eight killed in militia attack at DR Congo wildlife reserve

Grandmas made humans live longer

How fear skews our spatial perception

New Stanford analysis provides fuller picture of human expansion from Africa

New images could crack ancient writings

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