Sandy Surges Across Northeast Causing Flooding and Power Outages

BY News Desk  October 30, 2012 at 7:00 AM EST

Update: 2:00 p.m. ET | On Monday, Superstorm Sandy slammed into the eastern seaboard, killing at least 38 people in seven states and producing driving rain and hurricane-force wind gusts that caused massive flooding, fires, seawater surges and an estimated $20 billion in damage.

The National Hurricane Center downgraded the storm from a hurricane to a “post-tropical cyclone” Monday night. And by Tuesday afternoon, Sandy was moving west toward Pittsburgh at a slower speed. Maximum sustained winds had dropped from 90 to 45 mph.

But estimates of the damage continued to grow throughout the day. More than 7 million lost power in 16 states. New York City was hit especially hard and suffered at least 10 casualties. In Manhattan, walls crumbled, the skyline went black and whole neighborhoods were submerged underwater after a record-setting high tide.

Rushing FloodwatersWater rushes into the Carey Tunnel (previously the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel), Monday night in the Financial District of New York. Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images

A confluence of factors accounted for the storm’s size, its slow progress west and the extent of flooding and damage it incurred. Sandy merged with a high-pressure system centered west of Greenland, a wave of arctic air moving east across the United States and a full moon that drove higher-than-normal tides.

Among the numbers: Eatons Neck, N.Y., was battered by 94 mph wind gusts. Redhouse, Md., got 26 inches of snow. And In Kings Point, N.Y., water surged 12.5 feet above normal levels. (You can find a roundup of statistics here from accuweather.com.)

From the early hours on Monday through Tuesday, we’ve been compiling, photos, articles, tweets, statistics and graphics on the storm. After sifting through, here are some of our favorites:

The Atlantic has amassed some of the most moving and breathtaking photos of the storm’s damage.

The New York Times has this interactive page that highlights the flooding, electrical outages and damage to the city’s transportation system. A toggle button lets you see how the power outages climbed throughout the night.

Scientific American has a thoughtful piece on the link between climate change and storms. Namely, how climate change “amps up” basic factors that contribute to storms and how scientists are increasingly more likely to drop the caveats and make the link.

You can find satellite images of the storm’s movement across the U.S. here, updated every half hour. From the National Weather Service.

On a lighter note, the observations on storm coverage by NPR’s Linda Holmes after watching The Weather Channel for 14 hours is a must read. “I’m convinced,” she writes, “that wall-to-wall weather coverage soothes anxiety by making you feel (quite incorrectly) like you now have an encyclopedic knowledge of how, exactly, you might wind up with a basement full of raw sewage.”

And don’t miss the half-naked guy in the horsemask jogging through blustery Northwest D.C. in the hours before the storm made landfall. NBC4 News reports.

You can also watch a compilation of weather reports operated by UStream:

We’ll have more coverage on Tuesday’s broadcast. You can browse the content compiled in Tuesday’s live blog below. Click here to see Monday’s live blog.