Suffolk ‘fared very well’

Published 10:05 pm Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Governors in New York and New Jersey didn’t hesitate to describe Sandy’s trail of destruction as “catastrophic,” “historic” and “unthinkable.”

Floodwaters rushed into streets, turning them into rivers four to five feet deep. Subway tunnels flooded, bringing the public transit system to a halt, according to reports. In Queens, 80 homes burned to the ground in a massive blaze battled by more than 200 firefighters. Hospitals were evacuated, with nurses carrying sick newborns down multiple flights of stairs. Residents reported a visibly changed landscape.

Meanwhile, in Suffolk, a few days of wind and rain seemed mild by comparison.

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“I think we fared very well,” Mayor Linda T. Johnson said.

Some folks in New Jersey also believed they fared well, despite the devastation in the state.

Vanessa Friend, whose friend Michelle Kiger lives in Suffolk, lives in Hunterdon County, N.J.

“It’s not too bad in my general area,” Friend said. “Most people around me have trees down and some damage, but it’s not too bad.”

Friend, who lived in Hampton Roads during Hurricane Isabel, said Sandy knocked out her power for about an hour. When she got home from work around 6 p.m. Monday, “it was windy and raining, but not too bad,” she said.
Around 9:30 p.m., “everything picked up,” she said. About 85 percent of the county remained without power on Tuesday, so she considered herself lucky.

More than 30 deaths are being blamed on the storm, mostly in New York and New Jersey.

The event was eerily reminiscent of last year’s Hurricane Irene, which caused relatively mild effects in Suffolk but wreaked havoc in New England with unprecedented flooding.