FEMA has now been able to get a working knowledge of just how bad the destruction from Sandy was in the Garden State and they are estimating some 72,000 homes were damaged by the storm.
While the numbers are expected to go higher in the coming weeks here is what FEMA says:
An analysis of aerial imagery by the Federal Emergency Management Agency shows more than 500 buildings were destroyed outright, reduced to piles of debris, caved in or sliced into chunks.
An additional 5,000 structures suffered major damage from flooding or high winds, and some 24,000 were seen with minor damage. Floodwaters settled in tens of thousands of others, according to the federal agency’s preliminary damage assessments.
That is going to take a lot of time, patience, money and goodwill to get New Jersey back to where it can feel whole again. Johnny has been most impressed by the steely resolve shown by New Jersey residents. Bad, very bad things happened and yet planning is already taking place and rebuilding has begun. At the risk of sounding condescending, Johnny thinks the difference between the Sandy storm and Katrina has been the immediate bounce-back attitude shown by our local communities. Yes, better local leadership plays a role as do a President ready to act and a Governor ready to work across party lines. The residents took it from there. Here the volunteers outnumbered the looters a thousand to one.
Johnny can't wait to walk on rebuilt boardwalks all up and down the shore. No, these boardwalks were not part of his childhood or a part of growing up like so many reading this. They will however represent a lot of all that is good in his adulthood. Walking on them will now become a seminal part of his Garden State life.
The people here were anything but the clowns shown on TeeVee shows.
Without trying to minimize the hurt being felt by those among the 72,000, our Governor put in an uplifting performance on SNL last night: