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Cuomo: N.Y. superstorm damage could total $33B


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But roads in New Jersey and New York City were clear for the morning commute, and rail lines into New York were running smoothly so far, despite snow still coming down heavily in some areas.

The Queens-Midtown Tunnel, a vital vehicular route linking Manhattan to the city borough of Queens and the rest of Long Island, is reopening Friday after being swamped by Sandy, Cuomo said.

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Under ordinary circumstances, a storm of this sort wouldn’t be a big deal. But large swaths of the landscape were still an open wound, with the electrical system highly fragile and many of Sandy’s victims still mucking out their homes and cars and shivering in the deepening cold. As the storm picked up Wednesday evening, lights started flickering off again.

The additional power outages could stall recovery efforts, even though utility companies had prepared, adding extra crews ahead of the nor’easter.

In New Jersey, there were about 400,000 power outages early Thursday; 150,000 of those were new. In New York City and Westchester, more than 70,000 customers were without power after the storm knocked out an additional 55,000 customers.

For Consolidated Edison, the extra outages were dealt with swiftly, so there were only about 3,000 additional customers without power from the total Wednesday of 67,000.

"I think we’re going to be able to power through. Our objective was to get power restored to everyone by the weekend and we’re still working with that goal," said Alfonso Quiroz, a spokesman for the utility.

On Long Island, an area badly battered, there were 125,000 new outages, but about 80,000 were restored, making a total of about 300,000 customers without power. Long Island Power Authority spokesman Mark Gross said the utility was assessing new damage while working to restore outages.

Paul Farash, of West Babylon, N.Y., said he got power back after three days and didn’t lose it again.

"Whatever I experienced was minimal compared to a whole lot of other people," he said. "I’ve seen some things. I’ve heard about some things. and I know some things. And I’m counting my blessings. I’ll survive."


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There was good weather news: temperatures over the next few days will be in the 50s in southern New England, said meteorologist Frank Nocera, and on Sunday it could edge into the 60s.

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Eltman reported from Garden City, N.Y. Contributing to this report were Associated Press writers Kiley Armstrong, Jonathan Fahey, Tom Hays, David B. Caruso, Meghan Barr, Jennifer Peltz and Deepti Hajela in New York; Michael Gormley in Albany, N.Y. Jim Fitzgerald in White Plains, N.Y.; and Angela Delli Santi and Wayne Perry in Harvey Cedars, N.J.



Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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