November 1, 2012

Storm Impact

In the wake of Sandy, we talk to an affected family and look at the economic aftermath.

Maggie: Sandy knocked out electricity to the entire neighborhood behind me, leaving even the streetlights blacked out. Now, hundreds of thousands of people are looking for ways to survive without power. Young people here in New York City have also been out of the classroom all week.

Andrey: There is no Internet so you can’t do your homework or the full extent of your homework.

Maggie: And no power makes for a boring time sitting at home.

What are the essentials that you have been missing or that you have been trying to find in life without power?

Student: TV. Definitely TV and Xbox.

Audrey: We only downloaded a certain amount of TV shows to watch. So, you know, it’s getting pretty boring now.

Maggie: Those without electricity in their homes have to come to places like this in the neighborhood that have enough electricity so they can recharge essentials and get a hot plate of food to eat, but it often means they have to battle for a spot in line.

Erica Gianchetti: I have several electronics to charge up.

Erica Gianchetti has been without power for three days.

Erica: I’m literally fighting for a power strip and just fighting for an outlet just so I can charge up.

Maggie: And without power, gas pumps can’t pump gas. Drivers who did find a working gas station waited hours for a fill-up.

Thousands of other businesses can’t open without power. That means hourly workers may be facing days or weeks of lost wages.

But there is some good news. Disasters can create an economic boost. Rebuilding after the storm can stimulate the economy, some experts say by a hundred billion dollars or more.

Erica: The mom-and-pop-shop delis, I’m really happy for them because I think they’re getting a lot of great business because all the chains are kind of shut down in the neighborhood. So, it’s a blessing in disguise for some people in businesses.

Maggie: And business has been booming for social networks. Many politicians in the storm struck region have taken to Twitter to issue important updates.

And Facebook says Sandy has been the year’s second most talked about topic after the Super Bowl. The company says some of the most shared terms after the storm were, ‘we are ok,’ ‘power’ and ‘damage.’

Maggie Rulli, Channel One News.


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