Millions of residents throughout the Eastern seaboard began to recover Tuesday from the effects of Hurricane Sandy. Record rainfall, heavy winds and power outages closed Montgomery County schools Monday and Tuesday.
Despite the closures, the D.C. area escaped the worst of Sandy. About 300,000 households lost power in Maryland as of Monday night, governor Martin O’Malley said in a statement. About 7 million customers on the East Coast lost power, according to various news reports.
Schools will reopen Wednesday, MCPS announced this morning. The Metro will also reopen 2 p.m. Tuesday, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority announced.
New York and New Jersey were hit the hardest by the historical storm. New York City’s subway was flooded in spots, closing it for up to 5 days, and Lower Manhattan shut down with flooding and power outages for hundreds of thousands, various news reports indicated.
“When Sandy came ashore in Atlantic City, its counter-clockwise circulation brought in moisture from the north,” National Weather Service meteorologist Jim Lee said.
The storm’s path and turn towards the northeast resulted in the energy, winds and flooding most severly impacting the Tri-State area, Lee said, with New York City receiving record-setting storm surges and flooding. The lack of widespread damages surprised many in the D.C. area.
Though the majority of damage was minimal, the storm caused trees to fall, several floods and numerous street closures in the area, Montgomery County spokesperson Patrick Lacefield said.
Advanced planning and preparations by Pepco to limit the damage also helped reduce the amount of people without power, Pepco spokesperson Clay Anderson said. The electric company brought in about 1,500 electric workers from as far away as Alabama and Texas for storm repairs.
“Based on the size of the storm, we expected more outages in the area than we received,” Anderson said. “We’re relieved for our customers.”
Fewer than 8,000 customers remained without power in Montgomery County as of 1 p.m. Tuesday, according to Pepco.
“My family bought a lot of supplies and gas for our generator, expecting the storm to be like the one from last summer,” sophomore Amritansh Kwatra said. “But it was a letdown. There were some lights flickering, but other than that nothing much happened.”
Ten schools in Montgomery County remained without power as of Tuesday morning, MCPS spokesperson Dana Tofig said.
“We hope they will all be back online today at some point,” he said.
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