Wednesday, November 21, 2012

RIOC Briefing On Roosevelt Island Hurricane Sandy Damage - Storm Surge Of 3 to 5 Feet Caused Significant Damage To Seawall, Lighthouse Park and Observation Pier, But No Injuries Or Loss Of Life

Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Vice President Of Operations Fernando Martinez (who resigned last Monday effective December 21) briefed the November 15 RIOC Operations Committee on Hurricane Sandy damage suffered by Roosevelt Island and response by RIOC. According to Mr. Martinez:
  • Hurricane Storm surge of 3- 5 feet caused significant flooding at Lighthouse Park and the Observation pier,
  • Lighthouse Park Land Pedestrian Bridge washed away and Light Poles damaged,
  • Significant damage to seawall at various location particularly Lighthouse Park,
  • 21 Trees Lost,
  • Steam Tunnel Flooded on North Side of Steam plant resulting in no heating at RIOC Facilities or Coler Hospital,
  • Coler Hospital basement completely flooded, RIOC provided fuel for Coler emergency generators,
  • Power was out at Octagon and portions of Rivercross and Roosevelt Landings/Eastwood,
  • People were walking around during Hurricane putting themselves and others in danger. A Public Safety Officer almost fell in the East River while warning people of the danger,
  • No damage at Goldwater Hospital or FDR Memorial,
  • No loss of life or injury on Roosevelt Island,
  • Lighthouse Park will be closed for an extended period of time - unknown for how long,
  • Cost of repairs estimated at a couple of hundred thousand dollars and mitigation of Observation Pier and Lighthouse Seawall of half a million dollars. These costs will be submitted to FEMA for reimbursement,
  • suggestion was made to explore adding a 2 foot kneewall to the perimeter of Roosevelt Island promenade to prevent future flooding and
  • having RIOC provide shelter for residents who lose power rather than going to a NYC City emergency shelter in Queens
Here's Roosevelt Island Hurricane Sandy aftermath briefing by Mr. Martinez.

More on Hurricane Sandy from these previous posts.


CheshireKitty said...

In the context of possible future floods/emergencies, RIOC, as set forth in the above bullet points, correctly understands (or is the word "grok"?) that it makes sense to "provide shelter for residents who lose power rather than going to a NYC City emergency shelter in Queens" - even though RI *is* in Zone B. So much for the "pundits" of some weeks weeks ago who felt doing so would violate the Laws of Basic Science (or was it JHS Earth Science?) the published Emergency Preparedness Guidelines (as set forth in Federal Circular ZXY 785-3428, rev. 1944) and that Roosevelt island would probably just disintegrate if such shelter were provided on island!! Well, guess RIOC thinks like me that it makes quite a lot of sense - despite geophysical, meteorological, and governmental evidence and guidelines to the contrary - to provide on-island shelter for those island residents who may lose power if and when there's another flood!

Frank Farance said...

CheshireKitty, you've got it wrong, that's not what happened (regardless of Rick's reporting, which is in error). There was no agreement to provide shelter. Mr. Martinez was very clear about his concerns with stepping across the line in providing housing (i.e., a shelter) vs. providing a center (which is open a limited number of hours).

Maybe Rick's bullet item would be better written as:

- there was a discussion of the loss of power and what RIOC can do to provide help locally during the outage, the topic will be invested/explored

CheshireKitty said...

Haw, haw, haw - so when you're proved wrong, then Rick's reporting is "in error"... gimme a break, Frank! RIOC, which you like to beat up on for its "dimness" on occasion, is more in line with reality and common-sense than you on this simple idea which makes so much sense: Give people affected by power outages, who are freezing their butts off, a center, a shelter - call it what you will - where they can go to warm up on RI, not in Queens or Manhattan. This would only work if parts of the island still have power (obviously) and we're not talking about elaborate temp accommodations like you would have in Queens or Manhattan. But surely, if RIOC/City can provide a cooling center on RI when the weather is sweltering, then RIOC/City could likewise provide a warming center for those islanders without power when the weather is cold! This ain't rocket science Frank!!! ;-D

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