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10/31/12 Update: The Aftermath Begins

Well, this will probably be the last daily update, as the superstorm system is pretty well dissipating at this time. Here’s where we are today:

As you can see here on the infrared satellite, the supersystem has pretty much spun itself out. What is left is headed for the Canadian Maritimes with greatly reduced force and cohesion.

The national doppler radar shows that there are still pockets of rain happening in most of the areas affected by Sandy, but nothing like torrential downpours or blizzards.

The storm center has moved north of Lake Ontario, so there is still a discernible curl. Winds are still drawing cold air down south of the Great Lakes, while New England is starting to see warm winds coming up from the Gulf of Mexico.

Here are the temperature affects from those winds – 40° in Ohio, 60° in Maine. Sandy has delivered winter to much of the Great Lakes and Appalachian regions, while the winds have pretty much taken care of New England’s foliage.

Finally, this map shows national snow cover as of today. West Virgina, it’s almost all yours. Aren’t you lucky?

Seriously, today we continue and intensify recovering from this mess. For the most part, inland areas are dealing mostly with wind damage and power outages – the Appalachian blizzard being the exception… but dealing with lots of snow is a normal event for most of the snow-affected area, just not usually this early in the season. They know what to do, and are doing it admirably.

The tough hits were along the coastline, with the New Jersey coast devastated and NYC… well, what has happened to the Big Apple reminds me of a lot of “B” movie disaster films. Without the laughs. It is almost too much to take in. Power is out; 110 homes in Queens burned; fires broke out in other areas too; the Brooklyn-Battery Park Tunnel is filled with water; the subway system is shut down indefinitely until they can pump out the flooded sections and inspect/repair/replace over 600 MILES of equipment; the steam system that heats a good portion of Manhattan is compromised until that can be inspected; commuter rail into and out of the city is disrupted; and the looting has started.

After seeing so many examples of the finest in people over the past few days, it is heartbreaking to now be confronted with the predators, the worst of people. I can understand, in these circumstances, looting for food or water or Sterno; I cannot, and will never, understand looting a flat screen TV. That is predation, and we are better than that.

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