Northeast tries to get back on track after storm
In New York, where Central Park recorded 11 inches, not even enough to make the Top 10 list, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the city “dodged a bullet” and its streets were “in great shape.” The three major airports serving the city — LaGuardia, Kennedy and Newark — were up and running by late morning after shutting down the evening before.
Most of the power outages were in Massachusetts, where at its peak more than 400,000 homes and businesses were in the dark. In Rhode Island, a high of around 180,000 customers lost power, or about one-third of the state.
Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island imposed travel bans to keep cars off the road and let plows do their work, and the National Guard helped clear highways in Connecticut, where more than 240 accidents were reported. The Guardsmen rescued about 90 people, including a few who had hypothermia and were taken to hospitals.
On Long Island, hundreds of drivers spent a cold and scary night stuck on the highways. Even snowplows got bogged down or were blocked by stuck cars, so emergency workers used snowmobiles to try to reach motorists, many of whom were still waiting to be rescued hours after the snow had stopped.
Richard Ebbrecht, a chiropractor, left his office in Brooklyn at 3 p.m. on Friday and headed for home in Middle Island, N.Y., but got stuck six or seven times on the Long Island Expressway and other roads.
“There was a bunch of us Long Islanders. We were all helping each other, shoveling, pushing,” he said. He finally gave up and settled in for the night in his car just two miles from his destination. At 8 a.m., when it was light out, he walked home.
“I could run my car and keep the heat on and listen to the radio a little bit,” he said. “It was very icy under my car. That’s why my car is still there.”P
Police said Sunday that all known abandoned cars were searched and no one needing medical help was found. But a 27-mile stretch of the expressway remained closed in both directions so crews could remove snow.
Around the New York area, many victims of Superstorm Sandy were mercifully spared another round of flooding, property damage and power failures.
“I was very lucky, and I never even lost power,” said Susan Kelly of Bayville, N.Y. “We were dry as anything. My new roof was fantastic. Other than digging out, this storm was a nice storm.” As for the shoveling, “I got two hours of exercise.”
Across much of New England, streets were empty of cars and dotted instead with children who had never seen so much snow and were jumping into snow banks and making forts. Snow was waist-high in the streets of Boston. Plows made some thoroughfares passable but piled even more snow on cars parked on the city’s narrow streets.
Boston’s Logan International Airport resumed operations Saturday, and limited train and bus service in the metro area started again Sunday. Authorities hoped to restore most service for Monday.
Life went on as usual for some. In Portland, Maine, Karen Willis Beal got her dream wedding on Saturday — complete with a snowstorm just like the one that hit before her parents married in December 1970.
“I have always wanted a snowstorm for my wedding, and my wish has come true to the max,” she said.
Some spots in Massachusetts had to be evacuated because of coastal flooding, including Salisbury Beach, where around 40 people were ordered out.