Hurricane Sandy Hits Pelham Manor, New York

Hurricane Sandy Aftermath in Pelham - Kids On Downed TreeIt’s a day after Hurricane Sandy hit the Northeast, including our New York City suburb of Pelham Manor.

My biggest fear was the tidal surge and coastal flooding, less so extreme wind. In addition to the flooding of waterfront homes, I was concerned about the insufficient height of the pilings that hold the docks and harbor together in Pelham and neighboring New Rochelle.

Last year with Hurricane Irene, the water nearly reached the top of the pilings, which means the docks and boats attached to them nearly drifted away. I was confident Sandy’s tidal surge would exceed the height of most harbor pilings, resulting in destruction of thousands of boats.

Fortunately, that didn’t happen. According to a few folks who bravely spent the night on their sailboats (something most powerboaters would never do, no offense), the wind slowly transitioned from East to South at around the peak of high tide, resulting in a decline in both wind speed and tidal surge.

While the tidal surge in our area could’ve been much worse, Sandy still left widespread destruction as her gusts downed numerous old oak trees — and homes and cars. Thankfully, I’ve yet to hear of any fatalities in our town, though many close calls. We’re one of the few homes that still have electricity, so we’ve become popular among neighbors seeking phone-battery charges and ice.

Desperate to relieve our suffering from cabin fever and storm fatigue, our family took a short and very careful walk around the neighborhood, dodging downed trees, debris and power lines.

Check out our photos of the destruction — all in a two-block radius.

Published by Max Kalehoff

Father, sailor and marketing executive.