Superstorm Sandy devastated most of the Atlantic Coast in October 2012, with its most severe damage hitting New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. While most areas have recovered, there are equally as many areas that are still suffering the storm’s damage. One of these areas include the city of Long Beach on Long Island, New York. The following compilation of multimedia elements about this topic is by Ashley Hartman, Magdalene Michalik, Taylor Leonard-Coleman, and Christopher Owens.
Check out our video which shows the Long Beach community speaking out about the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
Take a look at our Vuvox which shows a series of photos of Long Beach in its reconstruction process.
We reached out to residents and learned that they are still struggling daily to cope from the effects of Hurricane Sandy.
Rebuilding Hearts and Homes
Superstorm Sandy hit New York and neighboring states like New Jersey approximately seven months ago, and the exhausting recovery attempt carries on with repairing, rebuilding and reopening devastated homes and businesses. The process has been rough and many people are still stressed in the aftermath of one of the most vicious storms to hit the Northeast region.
According to Long Beach Police Department Commissioner Michael Tagney, 30 percent of Long Beach’s residents have not returned to their homes after Hurricane Sandy. Many residents have not returned yet because there is nothing for them to return to.
“I evacuated my condo on West Park Avenue the day before the storm hit in late October and I am still out,” said Shari Kivet Stier, a Long Beach resident. “I had insurance but no flood insurance, so the process for rebuilding is taking much longer then expected. I lost everything.”
Superstorm Sandy has left countless Long Beach families stressed to conquer the natural damage and defeat that resulted from one of the worst storms to hit Long Island. The large quantity of building wreckage and still vacant residences confirm the reality that almost no one on this beach island was unaffected by this superstorm. What is not so candidly displayed, however, is the emotional suffering and mental wounds that frequently follow a tragic event like Sandy.
“I couldn’t even eat for weeks,” said Elliot Posner, a Long Beach resident. “I was devastated at the damage that Sandy caused both to my home and to my family. My kids were out of school for weeks and we lost basically our whole life. The rebuilding of my entire life was hard to grasp and still is but there is nothing I could of done and I just try my best everyday not to let the feeling overwhelm me.”
Posner is a father of four and has lived in Long Beach for only a few years. His house was completely flooded, ruining almost everything. He was stranded from his house for three months and when his family moved back in they still had no running water. The reconstruction of his house can take almost a year while waiting for insurance and money from FEMA.
“Waiting for FEMA is like watching paint dry,” said Posner. “It’s a long process but I have to do it for my family. We’ve been volunteering and helping the community rebuild that’s the only thing I want to happen.”
Tragedies like Superstorm Sandy often bring communities together. Now that the summer is quickly approaching we can still see that the camaraderie amongst fellow Long Beach citizens is still shining strong.
Long Beach boardwalk reconstruction begins after Hurricane Sandy
Hurricane Sandy wrecked the town of Long Beach during its path on between October 22-21, 2012. The storm was the most destructive and deadliest hurricane in 2012. The damage included the Long Beach boardwalk.