Three Caribbean Governments Send Support As Diaspora Battles Sandy

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Sandy washed up this tanker on Staten Island.
News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Tues. Oct. 30, 2012: Caribbean nationals are among tens of thousands of nationals in Connecticut, New York, New Jersey and Philadelphia in the dark as Super Storm Sandy took down trees and flooded areas, cutting power across many areas in the Northeastern U.S.

In New York and New Jersey, especially, many are dealing with flooded basements, downed trees and power lines and forced to stay indoors and skip work.

No subway and buses are working and the New York and New Jersey airports remain closed as much of Lower Manhattan has experienced severe flooding, and more than half a million Con-Ed customers in the City woke up without power this morning.

The subway system experienced the worst disaster in its 108-year history and remains shut down. While there is no firm timeline for when it will be up and running again, NAN is hearing that the subways will be coming back in phases and that full subway service will likely not resume for another 3-5 days. Bus service will be starting again today at 5pm on a limited basis, and will fill in some service gaps.

A horrific fire in Breezy Point, Queens, has claimed more than 80 homes and there continues to be close monitoring of a crane collapse on 57th Street between 6th and 7th Avenues, which poses a major threat. Emergency responders have evacuated people from the immediate vicinity.

Here are some scenes from Sandy across New York and NJ. But others luckily survived unscathed.

Surge from Sandy moved this New Jersey amusement park into the sea.
Flooding at Ave.C in Manhattan, NY.
Flooding from Sandy in lower Manhattan.
The surge from Sandy forced a boat on to the Metro North tracks.
Downed trees from Sandy is the order of the day all around.
Long Island City, NY is also among the places flooded by Super Storm Sandy.
Flood waters in Battery Park Tunnel in NYC.
Flood waters in residential areas in northern New Jersey.
Flooding at La Guardia Airport in Queens, NY has kept the airport closed!
A BMW SUV Sits On A Bench in Brooklyn, NY. (Hayden Roger Celestin image)
A man walks by a fallen tree in the aftermath of Sandy in Forest Hills, NY on Oct. 30, 2012.
Cars floating out of an underground parking garage near Broad Street, NYC. (Arthur Piccolo image)
This is what is left of deli on Water Street, NYC which was yesterday afternoon packed and doing huge business but 3 hours later it was destroyed on Oct. 29th, 2012. (Arthur Piccolo image)

On Tuesday morning, U.S.V.I. Governor John P. de Jongh, Jr. and Grenada Prime Minister, Tillman Thomas, were the first regional leaders extending words of support to their Diaspora.

“Our thoughts are with those who reside in New York, New Jersey, Washington, DC and the other states up and down the east coast of the United States who have felt the devastating effects of this storm – everything from rain, winds, snow and fire,” de Jongh said. He noted that numerous residents in the tri-state region and along the coast from Florida to New Jersey hail from the Virgin Islands and the Caribbean.

De Jongh said Lt. Governor Gregory Francis has been in touch with the leaders of various civic organizations in the New York and Washington, DC areas and pledged to support the recovery effort as is needed.

“We in the territory are very familiar with the devastating effects of wind and rain storms and we know how these natural disasters can affect our daily lives. We pray for a speedy recovery by our resilient Caribbean people. Over the next few days, I am sure that, with the assistance being provided, those affected by this storm will begin to pull their lives together again,” de Jongh said.

Grenada’s PM Thomas said his government expressed solidarity to all Grenadians and other Caribbean nationals affected.
“Our concern for you comes against the background of our own recent experiences with Hurricanes Ivan and Emily,” said the PM. “We hope and pray for your safety and that of all others residing along the path of Hurricane Sandy.”

Jamaica’s Prime Minister, Portia Simpson Miller, later extended “deepest sympathies to the people of North America” adding that prayers also go out to “the members of the Diaspora who have been affected.”

And in Guyana, the leader and central executive of the opposition, People’s National Congress Reform, said it emphasized with Guyanese nationals of New York, New Jersey, Maryland and the District of Columbia where the effects of the storm effects were extremely devastating.

“We would like to assure you of our continued concern and support. We extend our prayers to all those affected during this time of distress. We wish that there would be a speedy and return to normalcy from the devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy,” The PNCR said in a statement Thursday.