The National Park Service incident management team overseeing Hurricane Sandy recovery efforts in New York and New Jersey continued its work yesterday. Specialized support crews are continuing their work supporting employee emergency needs, conducting damage assessments, and removing debris in the affected areas. Currently, there are 320 National Park Service employees from 101 parks and 38 states, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia working with the incident management team, with more staff continuing to arrive.
The following reports were submitted on yesterday’s activities:
- Statue of Liberty – The pedestal and base (including the main floor and exhibits on the second and third floors) received little or no damage. All mechanical systems are down, both the visitor and National Park Service docks have significant damage, more than half of the brick pavers in the promenade around the island have been dislodged, and railings and other barriers for the protection of employees and visitors have been damaged or are missing. The vast majority of Liberty Island has debris and/or “trip and fall” hazards. Water flooded the basement of the visitor contact building and concession facilities and security screening facilities were significantly damaged.
- Ellis Island – The museum emergency response team assigned to the incident has evaluated the site and determined there is little or no damage to the curatorial, museum and archival collections stored in the Immigration Building, although standing water was found in the basement where the concessioners’ supplies are stored and there were broken windows at ground level. There is significant damage to mechanical systems and the fire suppression system is threatened. Park offices in the New Immigration Building received minor flooding, causing buckling of wood floors. The bridge from Liberty State Park to Ellis Island was lifted off its foundations by the storm surge, but it has already been repaired, inspected and certified safe for travel by the Federal Highway Administration and the National Park Service. Modern support structures, including trailer facilities used for offices were destroyed.
- Governors Island – Due to inclement weather and safety concerns, no assessment work was done yesterday. It will resume when conditions improve. The park ended its open season for the public on September 30th
- Grant’s Tomb, Hamilton Grange and St. Paul’s Church – No assessment work was done yesterday due to the weather. St. Paul’s is open to the public.
- Federal Hall and Theodore Roosevelt Birthplace – The sites have no assessed damage but remain closed due to lack of power.
- Castle Clinton and African Burial Ground – Neither has power, phone or internet, but damage is minimal.
- Gateway – Crews secured equipment and as much debris as possible in the park’s several units in anticipation of high winds. The Sandy Hook Unit is currently closed due to weather conditions.
- Fire Island and Sagamore Hill – Crews secured equipment and as much debris as possible in anticipation of high winds. Fire Island is currently closed due to weather conditions.
- Morristown – Crews prepared for the nor’easter. The park will remain closed until further notice.
- Edison – Preparations were made for the storm.
Social media remain active. Visitation to the Facebook site has been reached nearly 27,311 individuals to date. The Twitter site continues to re-tweet incoming information from the parks and other agencies.
More information on the response can be found at these websites:
- Hurricane response and recovery – A webpage with current information on the NPS response to Hurricane Sandy.
- Resource needs shopping list – A ”shopping list” of incident management team positions that still need to be filled, updated daily.
- NPS Superstorm Sandy Response – A Facebook page managed by the IMT with updates on the response.
- SandyResponseNPS – A Twitter page managed by the IMT with updates on the response.