Superstorm Sandy slammed into the New Jersey coastline with 80 mph winds Monday night and hurled an unprecedented 13-foot surge of seawater at New York City, flooding its tunnels, subway stations and the electrical system that powers Wall Street. At least 16 U.S. deaths were blamed on the storm, which brought the presidential campaign to a halt a week before Election Day.
For New York City at least, Sandy was not the dayslong onslaught many had feared, and the wind and rain that sent water sloshing into Manhattan from three sides began dying down within hours.
Still, the power was out for hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers and an estimated 6.2 million people altogether across the East. The full extent of the storm's damage across the region was unclear, and unlikely to be known until daybreak.
Stock trading will be closed in the U.S. for a second day Tuesday — the first time the New York Stock Exchange will be closed for two consecutive days due to weather since 1888, when a blizzard struck the city.
Heavy rain and further flooding remain major threats for the next couple of days as the storm makes its way into Pennsylvania and up into New York State. The center of the storm was just outside Philadelphia near midnight, and its winds were down to 75 mph, just barely hurricane strength.
Salon has more photos of the extensive damage in New York and New Jersey. At least 17 people have died due to storm related causes. And many millions across the East Coast are still without electric power.
If you would like to help recovery efforts in the East Coast, The American Red Cross needs it.
Just thinking of friends here who have family back there, I've been at least a little scared. I can hardly even think of those who must worry about loved ones stranded in affected areas. They will certainly be in our thoughts and prayers today.