Carroll natives escape Sandy's bluster
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
Carroll native Eric Sundermann lives in Brooklyn, N.Y., and not far from where there were mandatory evacuations due to flooding from Hurricane Sandy.
Millions of people on the East Coast have no electricity as their worst tropical storm in a generation continues to churn.
At least 11 people there are dead from Hurricane Sandy. Some were killed by falling trees in New York City, where emergency 911 calls peaked Monday at 10,000 every 30 minutes.
Subway lines are flooded. More than 13,000 airline flights were canceled.
And in a rented row house in the Brooklyn borough of New York, Carroll native Eric Sundermann, 25, has just one main gripe:
“We still don’t have Internet.”
Sundermann, a Carroll High graduate, lives on the north side of Brooklyn, not far from where city leaders ordered mandatory evacuations of the areas that were inundated with surges of water many feet high.
On Monday, Sundermann heard shouting in his hallway. His landlord warned that the storm’s fierce winds had begun to peel the siding from the house.
But that was the worst of it.
“We didn’t lose power,” Sundermann said this morning, “but we were the lucky ones. A lot of people in Manhattan lost power.”
Officials reported that a nearly 40-block stretch of Lower Manhattan was without electricity.
Sundermann’s friends who live there are stuck. The bridges that connect Manhattan to Brooklyn — the path they could drive to Sundermann’s warm, lighted abode — were closed.
Sundermann, who writes about music, theater and beer for The Village Voice, a local alternative weekly newspaper, said he planned to venture outside to see the damage this morning.
“It was just crazy winds all night,” Sundermann recalled. “But the big surge happened last night between 8 and midnight. Once that passed, everyone was like, ‘That’s cool. We’re fine.’”
Kuemper High alumna Linda Tarplin, who lives and works in the Washington, D.C., area, has been without electricity since Monday afternoon but said her neighborhood escaped much of Sandy’s wrath.
“We have a wood-burning fireplace, so we kept relatively warm,” she said as temperatures dipped into the 40s outside. “Some of my business partners — one has a major leak in her roof — a lot of other people have tree damage, but we consider ourselves pretty lucky.”
Her son, Sam, is a freshman at New York University in Manhattan, where school officials have locked down the freshman dorm where Sam lives and has no electricity, she said. Workers evacuated hundreds of patients from the NYU Langone Medical Center after its backup generator failed Monday night.
Tarplin has endured several power outages in her Falls Church, Va., home — which is about 10 miles west of Washington, D.C., where she does health-care consulting and lobbying work. This won’t be the worst outage, she thinks.
Her family bought extra water, batteries, firewood and candles, but Tarplin hopes to gain electricity yet today.
In the meantime, she planned to go to a local coffeehouse to recharge cellphones and other devices.
“You can tell that the storm has left the area. The (Washington) D.C. community will get back up and running,” she said this morning. “Everybody will go back to work tomorrow. We all expect the government (offices) to be open. My 15-year-old son will hopefully go back to school.”
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