Hurricane Sandy Hits East Coast Hard: 7 Latest Developments

Hurricane Sandy is gone, but she left a trail of devastation in her wake.

Superstorm Sandy barreled through the East Coast late Monday night, flooding the streets of New York and New Jersey, sparking electrical fires in Queens, N.Y. and leaving many households without power.

As the storm aftermath continues to spur new developments. Celebuzz has the latest.

1. At least 18 are dead across the U.S., 10 in the New York City region.

As of Monday morning, at least 16 storm-related deaths in the U.S. were confirmed. Sandy also killed 66 people in the Caribbean.

2. This is the largest storm-related outage in ConEd’s history. More than 2 million New York customers and 2.4 million New Jersey households are without power.

Hurricane Sandy has inflicted the “largest storm-related outage in our history,” said Con Edison on Tuesday. More than 650,000 customers in New York City and Westchester County have lost power. That’s more than three times the last record, when 200,000 lost power during Hurricane Irene. However, before power can be restored, Con Ed has to assess the damage, which includes more than 200 downed wires on Staten Island, and clean any equipment damaged by sea water.

3. In Staten Island, a water tanker went aground.

Sandy’s strength caused a 168-foot water tanker to run aground in Staten Island, N.Y.  Most of the city’s waterfront was largely destroyed, which includes a number of businesses. Tanker was moored about a mile away when Sandy’s powerful force propelled it toward land. No one was on the tanker at that time.

4. Some 200 patients were evacuated from NYU Langone Medical Center after backup generators failed.

Paramedics and medical workers began to evacuate patients from NYU Langone Medical Center due to a power outage caused by  Sandy, followed by a failure of backup generators at the hospital. Approximately, 200 patients — 45 of whom were in critical condition — were moved out of NYU to other local hospitals via private ambulance with the assistance of the New York Fire Department.

5. A fire destroyed at least 80 houses in Sandy Hook, Queens, and more than 190 firefighters battled the blaze.

Late Monday night, flames broke out in a flooded area in Queens. About 25 people had to be rescued from an upstairs apartment in one of the buildings that burned.  More than 190 firefighters arrived on the scenes, using boats to make rescues.

6. All three area airports are closed at least until Wednesday afternoon. Aside from the Lincoln Tunnel, most East River and Hudson River bridges and tunnels appear to be closed.

The major airports serving New York City — LaGuardia, Newark Liberty and Kennedy — will remain closed until further notice.

7. The entire subway system has taken on an unprecedented amount of water and other damage, in what MTA chairman Joe Lhota called the worst disaster in its 108-year history.

In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, the subways are flooded to historic levels, shutting down transportation for what could be days on end. Chairman of the Metropolitan Transit Authority, Joseph J. Lhota, noted that the flooding — which has completely swamped at least seven stations and more than one rail yard — was “worse,” than his, “worst case scenario.” “In 108 years,” he said in a statement, “our employees have never faced a challenge like the one that confronts us now.”