Sandy Update 10-31-2012

I hope you are faring well as we recover from Superstorm Sandy.  I apologize that I have not been in more contact, but like many of you, I have lost power and have been working actively to make sure our neighbors have food, water, medicine and shelter.

Below is some potentially useful information.

Zone A including all of Battery Park City, most of the Financial District, the Seaport area and parts of the Lower East Side and Tribeca closest to the river remains under evacuation order.  Please do not return until the order is lifted, as it creates additional danger and burden for our first responders.

ConEd is working to restore power, but it’s expected to take up to four days. If you can safely move to a friend’s or family member’s home with power, it makes sense to do so.  Most predictions are saying Lower Manhattan and the LES will be without power until Saturday.

Some subway service will begin tomorrow (Thursday).  Obviously, not trains will be running south of 34th Street, or in any areas without power: Bus service is already running on a limited schedule.  A good list of working lines is at: http://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20121031/new-york-city/limited-subway-service-resumes-tomorrow-lirr-metro-north-today.

NYC Schools remain closed Thursday and Friday.

Most bridges and tunnels will be open, but a strict carpool regulation has been placed.  Only cars with 3 or more passengers may cross into Manhattan.  The Battery and Midtown tunnels remain closed.  Yellow cabs are temporarily allowed to pick up multiple passengers at multiple stops, and livery cars can temporarily pick up street hails.

President Obama has declared and emergency for most of the NY Metro area.  If you have sustained damage to your business or property, you can begin to apply for disaster assistance http://www.disasterassistance.gov.  I highly recommend you take photographs of all damaged items, and keep strict records of related expenditures.

If you have other needs, please reach out to 311. Phone wait times are long so http://www.nyc.gov/apps/311/  or text (311692) is your best bet.  Unless it’s a real emergency, please do not call 911, which has been overloaded.

If you want to volunteer:  Most evacuation shelters need volunteers today for eight hour shifts and, in some cases, clothing donations. You can find the closest shelter to you at http://gis.nyc.gov/oem/he/index.html.  In Lower Manhattan, our closest evacuation center is Seward Park High School, 350 Grand Street, between Ludlow and Essex Streets, and reach out to find out what they need.  There is also a volunteer hub at Rutgers Community Center on Madison St. and Rutgers St. You can also email  nycservice@cityhall.nyc.gov with your name, email address, and borough to volunteer in the coming days.  The Red Cross has volunteer info at http://www.nyredcross.org/?nd=news_room_detail&news_id=606&jid=63321.

Speaker Silver has set up a phone charging station during daylight hours at the corner of Grand and Lewis Streets in the Lower East Side.

The Department of Environmental Protection began placing water-on-the-go drinking fountains at six locations in Manhattan on Wednesday and will keep them open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily until power is restored. They are at

Canal Street and Centre Street, Monroe Street, Houston Street and 6th Avenue, W 23rd Street and 8th Ave., East 23rd Street and 2nd Avenue, West 14th Street and 8th Avenue.

Con Ed is distributing Dry Ice at Union Square and 17th Street.

To find up-to-date information on the recovery effort (including electricity, transit, and reporting damage), please visit the City of New York’s Office of Emergency Management website: http://www.nyc.gov/severeweather or call 311.

I am sure I am missing a great deal, but I hoe this is helpful.  Please feel free to reach out to me via this email, but be aware that my access to email and other communication is very limited.

Thank you, and please stay safe.

Best,

Paul

P.S. Happy Halloween!

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