According to a volunteer helping to distribute resources to victims of Hurricane Sandy last Friday, Drita D’Avanzo of VH1′s reality show Mob Wives, and her camera crew made a surprise appearance at a place where volunteers were distributing supplies to victims of Hurricane Sandy on Staten Island. According to a volunteer with the relief effort who spoke to The Observer, her arrival was “not well received.”
“So she walked up and volunteers thought it was another news crew filming people helping out. ” the volunteer said, providing a photo of the occasion. “But then a boom mike lurked over our heads. Notice in the picture everyone turning their backs on her and walking away. She was not well received and was able to clear a hot coffee stand on a cold day in 2 seconds.”
At a press conference at the 69th Regiment Armory in Manhattan this morning, Governor Andrew Cuomo and MTA Chairman Joe Lhota announced most subway service in New York City will be returned by the end of the day. Notably for some commuters from Queens and Brooklyn, trains will now be traveling into Manhattan for the first time since before Hurricane Sandy struck last week.
“In literally under one week, 80% of the subway service has been restored from what was horrendous damage, and the worst damage the subway system had ever seen,” Mr. Cuomo said. “So that is just a great, great job. The service between Brooklyn and Queens and Manhattan is being restored immediately. The 4, 5, 6 and 7 trains will immediately begin to run. The F, J, D [and] M will run later this afternoon. The Staten Island Railway will have limited service beginning later today.”
Economic costs related to Hurricane Sandy could top $18 billion in New York State, Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said today in a statement. Those costs include the disruption of business and loss of property and wealth, though estimates remain in flux due to the continued power outages, especially in lower Manhattan.
“Our daily infrastructure of highways, power, sewer and water—the elements of modern life that we take for granted—have all been altered by this storm,” Mr. DiNapoli said in the statement. “Though the rebuilding effort may offset some of these losses, we must continue to monitor what the long-term economic impact to New York will be.”
The catastrophe modeling firm Eqecat is estimating total U.S. economic costs from Hurricane Sandy at between $30 to $50 billion.
Some other highlights from Mr. DiNapoli’s report:
A Matter of Policy
Estimates for the total economic costs of Hurricane Sandy have risen to $30 to $50 billion from $10 to $20 billion, catastrophe modeling firm Eqecat said this morning in a release.
The new estimates, which were calculated after the storm landed on Monday, derive from larger-than-expected utility and electrical losses, which in turn Read More
Gov. Andrew Cuomo inserted himself into a potential tug-of-war between insurance companies and policy holders yesterday, declaring that insurers should not trigger hurricane deductibles for damages incurred during the storm that rocked New York this week.
If invoked, hurricane deductibles would prove costly for New York’s homeowners, with the deductibles typically ranging from 1 to Read More
At a press conference late in the night, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced New Yorkers in the metropolitan area will have their public transit fares waved for the rest of the week. Of course, traveling into Lower Manhattan won’t be easy for Thursday, at least, where no subways are currently scheduled to travel.
“As a further encouragement to have people take mass transit, which is coming online piece by piece,” Mr. Cuomo began, citing the intensive traffic congestion problems plaguing Manhattan earlier today. “I am declaring a transportation emergency and authorizing the MTA to waive fares…through the end of the week, Thursday and Friday. So commuter rails, subways and buses.”
When Hurricane Sandy overwhelmed New York City, the airport infrastructure naturally shut down along with everything else. As with the subway and bridge systems, however, it seems airplane travel is returning to normalcy.
Earlier today, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey announced the reopening of two airports in the metropolitan area, John F. Kennedy and Newark Liberty, to limited traffic, with the fate of LaGuardia Airport remaining uncertain as officials sought to repair and inspect the facility in the wake of flood damage. But that ambiguity did not last long; Governor Andrew Cuomo just declared LaGuardia will open too.
At a press conference earlier today, Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced public schools will continue be closed on Thursday and Friday, but will “hopefully” be open again on Monday of next week.
“Schools will remain closed for students tomorrow and Friday,” Mr. Bloomberg said. “However, on Friday we ask all teachers, administrators and school staff to report to work. Friday, Chancellor Walcott and the Department of Education will have lots of things to do to get ready for next week.”
Amid reports that looting has occurred in neighborhoods like Sea Gate and Coney Island in Brooklyn, as well as the broader recovery needs of hard-hit areas, Borough President Marty Markowitz has called on the military for further help in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy’s devastation.
“Governor Cuomo also acted quickly by activating the National Guard prior to the storm, and I urge him to allocate as many troops as possible to Brooklyn—troops from New York or any other states that can spare them,” Mr. Markowitz said in a statement. “During my tours of the hardest-hit Brooklyn neighborhoods yesterday and again today, it was apparent that the devastation is so widespread and overwhelming that it’s in the best interest of all of our residents for a more significant National Guard presence to supplement the great work being done by our brave—but overwhelmed—first responders, including our amazing NYPD and FDNY.”
Update 11/1 8:22:As of Friday morning, there will be service on the M and No. 7 trains has been restored in Queens and Brooklyn, though there is still no subway service into Lower Manhattan. You can read more about the changes to the service here.
Original post: At a press conference earlier this afternoon, Gov. Andrew Cuomo and MTA Chairman Joe Lhota announced that New York City’s subway system will restore service on a number of lines, leaving out a swath of territory south of 34th Street in Manhattan. Lower Manhattan was left out, they explained, because of the mass power outage in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.
“It’s been an extraordinary amount of time and a lot of work and a lot of lack of sleep, but we’re going to continue to do it,” Mr. Lhota said. “Our goal is to, every day, get this service back to normal, back to the situation we were used to last week, and if not, even better.”
View the working transportation lines below, including other parts of the MTA, courtesy of Mr. Cuomo’s office: