Wednesday, October 31, 2012
Posted by Cyber Tribe Network at 11:49 PM
One in four New York buildings without power... and Mayor Bloomberg warns Manhattan blackout could last for days
ONe in four New York buildings without power... and Mayor Bloomberg warns Manhattan blackout could last for days
- Infrastructure in America's largest city struggles to resume business after post-tropical storm causes damage
- Homes damaged, streets flooded and city plunged into darkness, causing misery and chaos for millions of residents
- Floodwater causes electrical substation to explode, causing power outages in Manhattan
- Residents demand answers as officials remain vague over when New York can expect to get back on its feet
- City Mayor Michael Bloomberg says 750,000 New Yorkers are without power
- Mayor admits it could take up to five days to have the city's subway system running again
- Governor Andrew Cuomo: 'It was as bad as anything I have experienced in New York"
Hundreds of thousands of New York City’s residents face a second gruelling night in darkness as a quarter of buildings across the metropolis remain without power.
More than 24 hours since the first deadly signs of the superstorm were felt across New York, the nation’s biggest city is still struggling to get back to its feet – and questions remain over exactly when power and public transport will resume.
Across New York and Westchester, around 811,000 people were without power by Tuesday evening, with a staggering 7.9 million affected in total up and down the East Coast.
And almost a quarter of a million homes and businesses on Manhattan are without power - more than the total outages across Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx combined.
Scroll down for video
Fatalities: New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, pictured at the lectern, said at least 10 people were killed in the city as a result of Superstorm Sandy
Black days: This general view from Exchange Place shows the skyline of lower Manhattan in darkness after a power outage caused by Superstorm Sandy
Blackout: People are lit up from the lights of a fire truck in the lower East Side of New York after power was shut off during Superstorm Sandy. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has warned that some residents face being without electricity for days
Darkness: Across New York, about 750,000 people were without power by Tuesday morning, Mayor Bloomberg said, with a staggering seven million affected in total up and down the East Coast
Emergency: A power outage at New York University Tisch Hospital meant paramedics were forced to evacuate patients
Evacuation: Hospital workers carry patient Deborah Dadlani from the NYU Langone Medical Center after back-up generators failed due to flooding, plunging the hospital into darkness
Widespread problems: This map shows areas of New York which have been flooded and left without power
The blackout in the most populous and wealthiest of New York City's five boroughs is in stark contrast to Hurricane Irene last year, when Manhattan was largely spared power cuts that ravaged the surrounding region.
The outages in Manhattan have been attributed to a huge explosion at an electrical substation, which blew up when it was apparently overwhelmed by floodwater.
Speaking at a press conference on Tuesday morning, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said: 'We expected an unprecedented impact storm here in New York City and that's what we got. It was a devastating storm, maybe the worst we have ever experienced.'
Across New York, around 750,000 people were without power by Tuesday morning, Bloomberg said, with a staggering seven million affected in total up and down the East Coast.
He was unable to offer specifics for the resuming of services, suggesting power could be back on in 'two or three days and maybe even a little longer than that' while the subway could take as long as 'three, four, five days'.
He added that other public transport has 'no timeline' but said he hoped buses would be open by Wednesday, and suggested roads would also be cleared for motorists by that time.
‘The damage is clearly extensive and would not be repaired overnight,’ he added. ‘Our first priority was and continues to be protecting lives.’
AMERICA IN DARKNESS: HOW STATES HAVE BEEN HIT
In a frightening development, Bloomberg added that Sandy has forced hospitals to close, including NYU downtown and the Veterans Affairs Hospital.
NYU Langone and Coney Island hospitals have been evacuated, while Bellevue is running on backup power, he said.
There have been no storm-related fatalities at these hospitals.
Yet the mayor added that at least ten people have lost their lives in New York City in the hurricane, and officials expect the number will become higher as the full extent of the destruction becomes apparent.
One person lost their life when a tree crushed them as they slept in their bed, while a man stepped into a puddle and was electrocuted by a fallen power line in the water, Bloomberg said.
Bloomberg added that officials have had more than 4,000 tree service requests and ordered people to stay away from parks. ‘I think people don’t understand just how strong nature is,’ he said.
President Obama declared a major disaster in New York and Long Island, making federal funding available to residents of the area. He suspended campaigning again on Tuesday.
‘The President has given aggressive orders giving whatever it needs,’ Congressman Chuck Schumer said at the press conference, adding there is ‘no shortage of dollars’ for the aid.
The vague details came as schools remained closed, the Stock Exchange empty, flights grounded and public transport at a standstill.
Already the storm, which smashed into the city on Monday evening, breaching the Hudson River, forcing floodwaters into Lower Manhattan and killing at least 10, is predicted to have caused a staggering $20billion worth of damage.
Power lines ripped down by the howling wind and an unexplained explosion at the ConEd’s 14th Street plant plunged the city that never sleeps into darkness on Monday night.
Blackouts stretch from 14th Street to the tip of Lower Manhattan – with the most extensive reported in the Financial District and Lower East Side.
Without power, hospitals were without elevator services, meaning patients had to be carried down staircases, and the usually bustling streets of Lower Manhattan were eerie and silent – interrupted only by blaring sirens from emergency vehicles.
John Miksad, senior vice president for electric operations at Consolidated Edison, suggested the power could be off for ‘several days to a week’.
‘This will be one for the record books,’ Miksad said. ‘This will be the largest storm-related outage in our history.’
ConEd added that power was fully restored eight days after Hurricane Irene – but expected this could be much worse.
Chaos ensued at the city’s three airports, although John F. Kennedy International Airport could open tomorrow. LaGuardia is expected to remain closed until further notice.
Already more than 12,000 flights have been cancelled, with a backlog reaching into the tens of thousands. A predicted 50,000 travellers between the UK and US alone have been affected by the storm.
Schools across the city will also remained closed tomorrow, while government employees have been encouraged to return to work, if it is safe.
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority said it has ‘no way to tell’ when subway systems will be open as they are faced with pumping water out of flooded tunnels in Lower Manhattan. The largest US transit agency had stopped its 24-hour system for weather for only the second time in its history.
Uncertainty: Mayor Bloomberg suggested power could be back on in 'two or three days and maybe even a little longer than that' while the subway could take as long as 'three, four, five days'
Disaster: 'The damage is clearly extensive and would not be repaired overnight,' the mayor said. 'Our first priority was and continues to be protecting lives'
Is help on the way? President Obama has declared a major disaster in New York and Long Island, making federal funding available to residents of the area
MTA Chairman Joe Lhota said in a statement: 'The New York City subway system is 108 years old, but it has never faced a disaster as devastating as what we experienced last night. Hurricane Sandy wreaked havoc on our entire transportation system, in every borough and county of the region.
‘We are assessing the extent of the damage and beginning the process of recovery.
‘All of us at the MTA are committed to restoring the system as quickly as we can to help bring New York back to normal.’
The New York Aquarium on Coney Island also suffered severe flooding in the storm, submerging the 14-acre facility under water.
Only once the water has receded can the damage be assessed, a spokeswoman for the Wildlife Conservation Society said.
Out of the darkness: A rainbow crosses over Manhattan today, as viewed from Williamsburg, Brooklyn
Devastated: Debris and rubbish remain in the shell of the Staten Island Railway's Clifton Shop after Superstorm Sandy brought destruction to New York
Collapse: A construction site sinks into a large hole on South Street Seaport after Superstorm Sandy hit Manhattan. A digger stands is positioned precariously nearby
Exposed: A view of a building that had its facade ripped off by Superstorm Sandy in New York. The post-tropical storm left at least 6.5million people without electricity
Swept away: Cars float in a flooded parking lot in New York after Superstorm Sandy battered the city. A growing amount of debris gathers next to the vehicles
Deluge: Superstorm Sandy caused water to flood lower Manhattan, New York, making many streets like this one no-go areas
Crushed: A severely damaged car is trapped under a fallen tree in the Lower East Side in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy in New York
New York’s governor, Andrew Cuomo, kept residents updated with brief statements and tweets, revealing that the Tappan Zee Bridge and Lincoln Tunnel were opening.
He added at the press conference that subway passengers will not be charged to use buses after service resumes.
While failing to add more specifics about when New Yorkers could expect services to resume as normal, Governor Cuomo said that the city needs to assess how best to protect itself from increasing weather disasters.
VIDEO: Mayor Bloomberg says he will move heaven and earth for the people of New York...
'The construction of the city did not anticipate these kinds of situations,' he said on Albany radio. 'We are only a few feet above sea level. You now have a whole infrastructure under the city that fills. The subway system, the foundations of buildings.'
He said the assesment was becoming increasingly urgent, adding: 'We have a 100-year flood every two years now.'
The Governor continued: 'This was really very frightening last night
'The Hudson River was just pouring into the Ground Zero site. The pit was filling ... Some of biggest commercial buildings in the city, the basements were flooded.
Shut down: The streets surrounding the New York Stock Exchange are deserted as financial markets remain closed for a second day due to Superstorm Sandy
Inundated: Water floods a parking garage in lower Manhattan. The storm is estimated to have caused damage costing $20billion to repair
'It was as bad as anything I have experienced certainly in New York - and certainly that New Yorkers have experienced.'
Speaking to NBC, Craig Fugate, an administrator from FEMA, revealed that the storm had already inflicted more than $20billion worth of damage as it smashed into the East Coast, killing 18 people before lumbering north.
Fugate assured viewers that search and rescue operations were underway in the hardest hit areas, and that ‘life safety’ was their top priority before they were able to reach the battered critical infrastructure, including hospitals.
‘This is very much a response operation,’ he said. ‘The storm is still not over. The first thing is to keep people alive.’
A hoarse-voiced New Jersey Governor Chris Christie added bleak news for his own state at a Tuesday morning press conference: Seaside rail lines washed away. No safe place on the state's barrier islands for him to land. Parts of the coast still under water.
‘It is beyond anything I thought I'd ever see,’ he said. ‘It is a devastating sight right now.’
He assured his residents that work was underway to restore their electricity and clear their roadways – but said infrastructure remained closed until they could further assess the damage. Nearly 100 healthcare services have reported power outages, he added.
‘We have over 2.4million people without power across the state, we've had flooding,’ he said. ‘We have a battered, battered New Jersey shore. I think the losses are almost going to be incalculable.’
Gutted: Keith Klein braves the rain and walks through homes damaged by a fire at Breezy Point in the New York City borough of Queens
Aftermath: A burned bicycle lies abandoned in front of homes devastated by fire and the effects of Superstorm Sandy at the Breezy Point section of the Queens borough of New York
Still burning: Homes continue to smoulder at Breezy Point, in the New York City borough of Queens, after fire swept through the neighbourhood when Superstorm Sandy brought down power lines
Pledge: President Obama suspending campaigning after Superstorm Sandy struck the East Coast and promised aid for communities in need
HOW SUBSTATION EXPLOSION PLUNGED MANHATTAN INTO DARKNESS - BUT COULD IT HAVE BEEN PREVENTED?
Bang: This explosion at an electricity substation on the east side of Manhattan lit up the famous cityscape
'We see a pop. The whole sky lights up,' said Dani Hart, 30, who was watching the storm from the roof of her apartment building.
'It sounded like the Fourth of July,' Stephen Weisbrot said from his 10th-floor apartment.
The explosion is likely to have been the result of flooding, given the proximity of the substation to the East River, but Con Ed officials have not ruled out the possibility that it was caused by flying debris.
The majority of houses, apartments and offices were left without any power at all, though most hospitals and some other buildings had access to emergency back-up generators.
However, the New York University Tisch Hospital saw its generator fail, leaving to the evacuation of 200 patients, including 20 babies in neonatal intensive care.
Full force: 11-year-old Trent Risley looks at power lines knocked down by Sandy at Scituate in Massachusetts
Submerged: Power cables in a flooded street in Westhampton Beach, New York state
Dozens of ambulances lined up around the block, preparing to transport the patients to other hospitals around the city.
Without power, there were no elevators, meaning patients had to be carefully carried down the stairs to safety.
Con Ed officials said on Tuesday morning that they had begun the process of restoring power to those affected, with around 10 per cent of customers back on the grid.
However, they were unable to estimate how long it would take to complete the task of restoring electricity to Manhattan.
One spokesman for the company pointed out that it took eight days to recover from Hurricane Irene last year, and warned that the process would take longer this time around.
'We have to assess the damage,' a Con Ed spokesman told CBS New York. 'Now we have to get in there, get the salt water out, basically the dried salt, dry the equipment, test it and then make sure it's safe to restore the power.'
One worker estimated that it would take three or four days to restore power to those who had been subject to the first wave of blackouts, but could take longer for the victims of the substation explosion.
Downed: This power line was knocked over by a falling tree as Sandy passed through Chevy Chase, Maryland
Destruction: Kim Johnson surveys the damage in Atlantic City, New Jersey
Many low-lying areas of New York City were still underwater on Tuesday morning, further slowing the recovery process.
'This is the largest storm-related outage in our history,' said Con Ed's senior vice president John Miksad.
Officials have warned the public to beware of downed power lines and other electrical equipment which could pose a hazard in the aftermath of the storm.
There are two principal causes of electricity failures during storms - downed power lines, and the flooding of underground cables and substations.
While some power lines were felled by Sandy, the majority of the damage in New York appears to have been caused by the flooding of the city's harbour.
Before power can be restored, underground equipment must be completely dried out and tested to ensure that it is not short-circuited by any water remaining in the system.
Saltwater is particularly problematic for power failures as it is a better conductor of electricity than freshwater, meaning that areas such as Manhattan which border the ocean are especially vulnerable.
Bounce: This extraordinary picture shows a trampoline caught in power cables in Milford, Connecticut
Posted by Cyber Tribe Network at 4:04 AM
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
"Project Thor" or "Kinetic Bombardment" - "Rods of God"
Rods from God/ Project Thor
Rods from God/ Project Thor
Posted by Cyber Tribe Network at 12:52 PM
Posted by Cyber Tribe Network at 8:45 AM
Tony Blair has said the EU would be better off with a directly elected president, as he warned deep political rifts between countries could lead to a break-up.
In a move interpreted by some as a job application, the former prime minister said the EU could do with a strong leader approved by the people.
He also warned that too deep a political divide between Britain and the core eurozone countries could lead towards a break-up.
"Out of this European crisis can come the opportunity finally to achieve a model of European integration that is sustainable," said Mr Blair. "A Europe-wide election for the presidency... is the most direct way to involve the public."
Europe's millions of residents might feel "alienated" unless they have a direct say in who is governing them, Mr Blair told the Nicolas Berggruen Institute on Governance.
"An election for a big post held by one person - this people can understand," he said. "The problem with the European Parliament is that though clearly democratically elected, my experience is people don't feel close to their MEPs."
Speaking in Berlin, he said the EU must not allow too big a divide to grow up between Britain, which wants to claw back powers from Europe, and countries like France and Germany opting for more political union.
"I would give a stark warning: if eurozone structures end up with a Europe that is fundamentally divided politically as well as economically; rather than a Europe with one political settlement that accommodates different levels of integration within it, the EU as we know it will be on a path to break up," he said.
In a thinly veiled warning to David Cameron, he said playing "short-term politics" is not in Britain's interest and urged the UK to take "a constructive role in shaping this new union".
The Prime Minister is currently under pressure to call a referendum on Britain's membership of the EU from eurosceptics in his party. Other European states, such as Finland, have expressed fears that the UK is waving "bye bye" to the EU.
Mr Blair today made it clear that forgng Britain's role in the EU as it changes will be a "tricky task".
"But it is an essential one if the UK is not to be sidelined and Europe to be without the active participation of such a large and significant member of the existing union," he said.
Posted by Cyber Tribe Network at 8:23 AM
The layoff notices have become a politically charged issue because they could have come just four days ahead of the election because of a 60-day notice required by federal law for mass layoffs.
Posted by Cyber Tribe Network at 8:18 AM
Obama declares 'major disaster' in New York as 17 people die in Superstorm Sandy and swathes of the city wake up under water
President Obama has declared a 'major disaster' in New York and Long Island as swathes of the city woke up under water after a night of being battered by Superstorm Sandy.
This morning millions of people on the East Coast are facing flooded homes, fallen trees and widespread power outages caused by the giant storm, which swamped New York City's subway system and submerged streets in Manhattan's financial district.
Sandy, one of the biggest storms to ever descend on the country, hit the mainland at 6.30pm local time yesterday having laid waste to large parts of the coast during the day.
The storm that made landfall in New Jersey yesterday evening with 80 mph sustained winds killed at least 17 people in seven states, cut power to more than 7.4 million homes and businesses from the Carolinas to Ohio, caused scares at two nuclear power plants and stopped the presidential campaign cold.
New York was among the hardest hit, with its financial heart in Lower Manhattan shuttered for a second day and seawater cascading into the still-gaping construction pit at the World Trade Center.
Among the dead in New York were two children killed instantly by a falling tree in Westchester County, a woman electrocuted to death by falling wires in Manhattan and a 29-year-old man killed in a car crash in Queens. A 30-year-old man was also killed when a tree fell on his house in Flushing, Queens.
Eye of the storm: New York was among the hardest hit by Superstorm Sandy. A fire broke out in Breezy Point, Queens, destroying between 80 and 100 houses
Battle: More than 190 firefighters have contained the six-alarm blaze fire in the Breezy Point section, but they are still putting out some pockets of fire
Destruction: Cars floating after being pushed out a flooded basement in the city during last night's battering
Beached: A huge tanker washed up on shore in Staten Island after the superstorm hit the east coast
Road blocked: Pieces of lumber displaced from a yard by rising flood waters are seen beneath Manhattan Bridge in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy
Transport down: A view of an entirely flooded tunnel under Battery Park. New York was among the hardest hit, with its financial heart in Lower Manhattan shuttered for a second day and seawater cascading into the still-gaping construction pit at the World Trade Center
The massive storm reached well into the Midwest: Chicago officials warned residents to stay away from the Lake Michigan shore as the city prepares for winds of up to 60 mph and waves exceeding 24 feet well into Wednesday.
Posted by Cyber Tribe Network at 7:49 AM