Cantabs 'nervous' as super storm hits

04:54, Oct 30 2012
A wave crashes over the protecting sandbags in front of the houses on the east side of Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina.
A wave crashes over the protecting sandbags in front of the houses on the east side of Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina. The area has been ravaged by several storms over the years and has suffered severe erosions problems.
US Route 30, the White Horse Pike, one of three major approaches to Atlantic City, New Jersey, is covered with water from Absecon Bay in this view looking west, during the approach of Hurricane Sandy.
US Route 30, the White Horse Pike, one of three major approaches to Atlantic City, New Jersey, is covered with water from Absecon Bay in this view looking west, during the approach of Hurricane Sandy.
A truck drives through water pushed over a road by Hurricane Sandy in Southampton, New York.
A truck drives through water pushed over a road by Hurricane Sandy in Southampton, New York.
An Army vehicle makes its way down a flooded street in Ocean City, Maryland, as Hurricane Sandy intensifies.
An Army vehicle makes its way down a flooded street in Ocean City, Maryland, as Hurricane Sandy intensifies.
Bracing against the wind, a man wades through a street flooded during Hurricane Sandy in Ocean City, Maryland.
Bracing against the wind, a man wades through a street flooded during Hurricane Sandy in Ocean City, Maryland.
A wall of water batters what remains of the fishing pier in Ocean City, Maryland as Hurricane Sandy intensifies.
A wall of water batters what remains of the fishing pier in Ocean City, Maryland as Hurricane Sandy intensifies.
A marina floods onto the road as Hurricane Sandy hits Ocean City, Maryland.
A marina floods onto the road as Hurricane Sandy hits Ocean City, Maryland.
Two boys run down Foster Avenue while dodging high winds and waves from the effects of Hurricane Sandy in Marshfield, Massachusetts.
Two boys run down Foster Avenue while dodging high winds and waves from the effects of Hurricane Sandy in Marshfield, Massachusetts.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
Siding was ripped off of this house in high winds from Hurricane Sandy in Scituate, Massachusetts.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
A man walks into the wind across the Hudson River from the skyline of New York in Hoboken, New Jersey.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
Streets are deserted as Hurricane Sandy comes ashore in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
Men try to save a boat which became unmoored and washed up on shore due to high winds from Hurricane Sandy in Scituate, Massachusetts.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
Kiwi Dave Turner, who's studying at Harvard, took this photo of some of the storm damage in his street in Cambridge.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
Kiwi Dave Turner said the tree took out power to his street. He said it was pretty wet and windy in Cambridge, Massachusetts, at the moment, just "like Wellington on a bad day".
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
A construction vehicle drives through the flooded streets of Brooklyn, New York.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
A local resident navigates the flooded streets of Brooklyn.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
Storm surf kicked up by the high winds from Hurricane Sandy floods through a home in Southampton, New York.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
Young boys play video games while in the sleeping area of a Red Cross shelter in Hampton Bays, New York.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
A driver stops to watch storm surf kicked up by the high winds from Hurricane Sandy in Southampton, New York.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
Fire fighters gather in front of a partially collapsed four-storey apartment building in Manhattan. The building's facade collapsed after high winds hit New York City.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
Floodwaters surround a car parked on a street in Hoboken, New Jersey.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
A man stands in front of a flooded building in Manhattan.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
A deluge of water floods the Battery Tunnel in Manhattan.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
Floodwaters from super storm Sandy rush into the Port Authority Trans-Hudson's Hoboken, New Jersey station through an elevator shaft.
A crane hangs from a building after being damaged in winds from Hurricane Sandy in New York.
Fire and rescue crews lead a boat of power workers through flood waters after their power station was over run by flood waters in New York.
Residents, including a young child, are rescued by emergency personnel from flood waters brought on by Hurricane Sandy in Little Ferry, New Jersey.
Residents, including a child, are rescued by emergency personnel from flood waters brought on by Hurricane Sandy in Little Ferry, New Jersey.
A New York carpark is submerged.
A New York carpark is submerged.
Sandy flooding
Damage along the shoreline caused by Hurricane Sandy in Milford, Connecticut.
The Bounty
The Bounty replica is submerged off the US's East Coast.
Residents walk along Broadway Avenue as they inspect damage from Hurricane Sandy in Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey.
Residents walk along Broadway Avenue as they inspect damage from Hurricane Sandy in Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey.
Water pushed up by Hurricane Sandy splashes into the window of a building standing by the shore in Bellport, New York.
Water pushed up by Hurricane Sandy splashes into the window of a building standing by the shore in Bellport, New York.
Residents of Rockaways, New York, survey the devastation caused by a fire which broke out during Hurricane Sandy.
Residents of Rockaways, New York, survey the devastation caused by a fire which broke out during Hurricane Sandy.

Former Cantabrian Chris Carter says wind is battering his New York apartment and waves are crashing down his street.

Sandy, one of the biggest storms ever to hit the United States, has roared ashore with fierce winds and heavy rain near Atlantic City, New Jersey, after forcing evacuations, shutting down transportation and interrupting the presidential campaign.

Carter and his wife Kara, who live on the ninth story of an apartment building in Newport, are expecting a "restless" night as the winds batter their floor to ceiling windows.

Chris Carter
"STARTING TO BUILD UP": Former Cantabrian Chris Carter looked out his Newport apartment window this morning to find debris floating down the Hudson River.

His biggest concern was the windows breaking under the pressure.

"It's pretty much at the height of the storm. It's pretty windy out there. The windows are rattling pretty hard. It's only broken the banks in the last couple of hours. The street is totally flooded now. There are pretty big waves crashing over the board walk," Carter said.

To make matters worse the river is at high tide, he said.

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Matt Greenslade
BRACING FOR WORST: Matt Greenslade with his wife Shelly and their children Sophie and James. They live in Hartsdale, about 40 kilometres from Manhattan.

Carter could see "massive pylons" and large pieces of wood flowing down the Hudson River.

The power has been cutting on and off, and the couple were concerned they would lose it all together.

Carter, who has lived in New York with his wife for three years and experienced Hurricane Irene last year, said it was the worst storm he had ever experienced.

"We had Hurricane Irene last year, that was nothing compared to this. It doesn't even compare."

His wife Kara, who has lived in New York all her life, said she had never seen "anything like this".

"It's just unbelievable ... I'm not that scared because we are in a building that was built in 2007. I definitely wouldn't want to be in an old building right now," she said.

People in the apartment had been issued a curfew and were not allowed to leave the building until 1pm tomorrow, she said.

High winds and flooding racked hundreds of kilometres of Atlantic coastline while heavy snows were forecast farther inland at higher elevations as the centre of the storm marched westward.

Former Christchurch man Andrew Bradley said he was holed up in his Brooklyn apartment with "some pizza and his dog".

"It's starting to get pretty windy but there's been a big build up for the last two days so it's sort of a waiting game," he said.

"Last time we had a storm nothing really happened so we'll have to wait and see."

Bradley has lived in New York for the last five years and was unconcerned by the onslaught of the superstorm.

"New York is going to be fine. The coastal areas are getting hammered but in New York everyone is just in buildings. We're well protected. It's like people over the world think New York is ending but we're going to be fine unless the power goes out or the water gets contaminated.

"They only show you the worst bits on television."

Forecasters said Sandy was a rare, hybrid "superstorm" created by an Arctic jet stream wrapping itself around a tropical storm.

Former Cantabrian Matt Greenslade, who lives with his family about 40km from Manhattan, said it was raining and winds had been increasing all morning.

"The trees are really being buffeted about. It comes in huge gusts,'' he said.

"Lots of sirens going this morning actually. Not many cars out.

''I saw three people out walking on our street. Madness. These trees are all tall and old and branches are going to come down."

 Greenslade had stocked up on supplies but was concerned about losing power.

"My neighbour across the road is worried about a cracked branch on his next-door neighbour's tree,'' he said.

''This branch is directly above the power lines that supply us all. If the power supply goes, it's likely to be several days before they can reconnect it.

"I have friends who had no power for four or five days last year."

Super storm moves in

Super storm Sandy has slammed into the New Jersey coastline and hurled a record-breaking four metre surge of seawater at New York, roaring ashore after washing away part of the Atlantic City boardwalk and putting the presidential campaign on hold.

At least 10 deaths were blamed on the storm.

Sandy knocked out power to at least 3.1 million people, and New York's main utility said large sections of Manhattan had been plunged into darkness by the storm, with 250,000 customers without power as water pressed into the island from three sides.

The 10 deaths were in New Jersey, New York, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Connecticut. Police in Toronto said a woman was killed by a falling sign as high winds closed in on Canada's largest city. The storm has already killed dozens as it crossed in the Caribbean as it approached the US.

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg says backup power has been lost at New York University hospital and the city is working to move people out.

Nineteen workers were trapped inside a Consolidated Edison power station on the east side of Manhattan by rising floodwaters, according to a Reuters witness.

A rescue worker, who declined to be named, said the station had suffered an explosion inside.

The city shut its mass transit system, schools, the stock exchange and Broadway and ordered hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers to leave home to get out of the way of the storm.

The National Hurricane Center said Sandy came ashore as a "post-tropical cyclone", meaning it still packed hurricane-force winds but lost the characteristics of a tropical storm. It had sustained winds of 129kph, well above the threshold for hurricane intensity. Sandy previously had been characterised as a hurricane.

The storm's target area includes big population centres such as New York City, Washington, Baltimore and Philadelphia.

Trees were downed across the region, untethered pieces of scaffolding rolled down the ghostly streets of New York City, falling debris closed a major bridge in Boston and floodwater inundated side streets in the resort town of Dewey Beach, Delaware, leaving just the tops of mailboxes in view.

In Manhattan a four-storey apartment building partially collapsed as Sandy made its approach.

The building's facade collapsed after being hit by high winds. No one was injured in the 25-unit building, according to media reports.

In Fairfield, a Connecticut coastal town and major commuter point into Manhattan, police cruisers blocked the main road leading to the beaches and yellow police tape cordoned off side entrances.

Beach pavilions were boarded up with plywood, and gusts of wind rocked parked cars.

''People are definitely not taking this seriously enough,'' police officer Tiffany Barrett, 38, said.

''Our worst fear is something like Katrina and we can't get to people.''

The Press