Obama declares major disaster as Sandy kills 16
As Hurricane Sandy continue to make landfall, President Obama has declared a state of disaster across several areas as more than 16 have reportedly died in the United States; not including the 60 from the Caribbean.
- New York City was especially devastated by the storm, the AP reports, including a 13-foot surge of seawater, three feet above the previous record. Large swaths of Manhattan have lost power, and amid all the water, an out-of-control fire has destroyed at least 50 houses in Queens.
- Obama’s declaration, which normally waits until a storm damage assessment can be done, opens up federal funding for victims in several counties in both states, USA Today reports. “This was so evident how bad it was that the president said, ‘let’s just get this done,’” says FEMA‘s administrator.
- More storm misery lies ahead for people in the Northeast and as far west as Chicago, CNN reports. Heavy rains will continue to soak the region and a blizzard spawned by the storm will dump up to three feet of snow on parts of West Virginia.
- As the storm heads west, more than a million people are under orders to evacuate and one disaster forecasting company predicts the economic losses from Sandy will top $20 billion, only half of it insured, Reuters reports.
- Meanwhile, the hurricane is taking its toll on the digital world: The Huffington Post, Gawker, and Mediaite are all down, the AP notes.
- Sandy smashes levee in New Jersey, Barack Obama declares New York ‘major disaster area’ (belfasttelegraph.co.uk)
- In pictures: Hurricane Sandy blasts ashore (independent.co.uk)
- Hurricane Sandy Handbook (urbantimes.co)
- FEMA administrator says dangerous conditions from Sandy persist (thehill.com)
- Obama calls Sandy storm major disaster in New York (en.trend.az)
- Impact of Hurricane Sandy on Election Is Uncertain (fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes.com)