55 Dead, Millions without Power in Sandy’s Aftermath
As Superstorm Sandy marched slowly inland, millions along the U.S. East Coast awoke Tuesday without power or mass transit, with huge swaths of New York City unusually dark and abandoned.
The storm that made landfall in New Jersey on Monday evening with 80 mph sustained winds killed at least 17 people in seven states, cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses from the Carolinas to Ohio and put the presidential campaign on hold one week before Election Day.
New York was among the hardest hit, with its financial heart closed for a second day and seawater cascading into the still-gaping construction pit at the World Trade Center. The storm caused the worst damage in the 108-year history of New York’s extensive subway system, according to Joseph Lhota, the chairman of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.
“This will be one for the record books,” said John Miksad, senior vice president for electric operations at Consolidated Edison, which had more than 670,000 customers without power in and around New York City.
Trading at the New York Stock Exchange was canceled again Tuesday — the first time the exchange suspended operations for two consecutive days due to weather since an 1888 blizzard struck the city.
President Barack Obama declared a major disaster in New York and Long Island, making federal funding available to residents of the area.
New York City’s three major airports remained closed. Overall, according to the flight-tracking service FlightAware, more than 13,500 flights had been canceled for Monday and Tuesday, almost all related to the storm.
An unprecedented 13-foot surge of…