Sandy's death toll climbs

Battery Park and the Battery Tunnel were under 13.5 feet of water at the height of the storm. (source: Cuomo Twitter feed)
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The death toll continues to rise and the scope of the devastation from Sandy is still being calculated.

At least 50 deaths have been linked to Sandy. Many of the victims were killed by trees uprooted by the superstorm.

Forecasters say it's turning from Pennsylvania into western New York, where it's expected to dump more rain. The effects of the storm have been felt from North Carolina to New England, from Michigan to the mountains of West Virginia. Waves on Lake Michigan topped 20 feet, and more than a foot of snow has fallen in West Virginia.

On the East Coast, it will be days before power and subway service can be restored in New York, where tunnels were flooded and parts of the electrical system were damaged by flood waters. Sandy, combined with a high tide, sent water over sea walls and into low-lying portions of Manhattan and other parts of the city.

In New Jersey, water is where it shouldn't be -- in housing developments, the streets of coastal communities and inside businesses. Landmarks, amusement park rides and boats are battered or misplaced. Gov. Chris Christie says what he saw during a helicopter tour was "unthinkable." He's to take another tour on Wednesday with President Barack Obama.

Millions are without power because of the storm. More than 8.2 million households in 17 states lost power.

Earlier version

The number of dead from the superstorm that struck the Northeast has climbed to 33, with many of the victims killed by falling trees.

At least 7.4 million people are without power.

New York City is virtually cut off by air, rail and road. Its subways are shut down, after suffering what officials say was the worst damage in the system's history. Lower Manhattan was among the hardest-hit areas after the storm sent a nearly 14-foot surge of seawater into low-lying streets. Most of the city's major tunnels and bridges are closed, as are the three major airports.

A huge fire destroyed as many as 100 houses in a flooded beachfront neighborhood in the New York City borough of Queens early today.

The full extent of the damage in New Jersey still isn't known. Police and fire officials have been trying to rescue hundreds of stranded people. Two neighboring communities were suddenly inundated by as much as five feet of water this morning.

Gov. Chris Christie says the damage along the Jersey Shore is "some of the worst we've ever seen." He says the cost of the storm is "incalculable."

The storm put the White House campaign on hold just a week before Election Day. President Barack Obama has canceled a third straight day of campaigning, scratching the events scheduled for tomorrow in Ohio.

Patients moved out of NYC hospital without power

More than 200 patients have been moved out of a New York City hospital that lost power to other medical facilities.

The evacuation of New York University Tisch Hospital began Monday night after a generator failure. It was completed Tuesday morning.

Ambulances came from around the city to help transport the sick. Patients were taken to other hospitals including Mount Sinai, the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer, Lenox and Bellevue.

Doctors and nurses first moved the sickest and youngest patients. Some were on respirators operating on battery power.

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg says the death toll in the city from the huge storm is up to 10.

He also says it could be three days or more before power is restored to hundreds of thousands of people now in the dark. He is giving no estimate on when public transit would be running, though he expects some buses be running later Tuesday.

The megastorm Sandy caused 13-foot storm surges in Manhattan. Trees also fell throughout the area.

Phone companies start checking storm damage

Phone and cable companies are still assessing the damage in the storm-hit areas of the East Coast amid widespread reports of phone outages in flooded areas.

Cablevision, which serves parts of Long Island, New York City and New Jersey, says it's experiencing widespread outages due to the loss of power. Verizon Communications, the biggest phone company in the region, says some facilities in downtown Manhattan are flooded, shutting down phone and Internet service. The company doesn't yet know the extent of outages in New Jersey, which bore the brunt of the storm.

AT&T says there are "issues" in hard-hit areas, and it's in the early stages of checking for damage and restoring service.

Tidal surge overruns 2 NJ towns with floodwaters

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie says the sudden middle-of-the-night flooding of two towns was the result of a tidal surge that sent water overflowing a natural berm.

The governor says the surge hit the Hackensack River.

He says hundreds of people have been rescued from the low-lying towns of Moonachie and Little Ferry.

Residents of a Moonachie mobile home park say water overflowed a nearby creek when the tidal surge occurred. In Little Ferry they say water gushed out of storm drains.

Local and county officials initially reported a levee had broken, but the governor says that was erroneous.

DC Metro to reopen at 2 p.m. on limited basis

The Washington area's Metro subway and bus system will reopen at 2 p.m. after making it through the deadly superstorm that's bringing destruction to the East Coast.

Metro announced Tuesday morning that once the system reopens, trains and buses will operate less frequently than usual for a weekday. They'll run at what Metro calls "Sunday service intervals."

Metro plans to resume normal service for the Wednesday morning commute.

Spokesman Dan Stessel says it appears the transit system weathered the storm well. He says there was some water infiltration but no significant flooding and few downed trees.

Metro is the nation's second-busiest transit system after New York City based on weekly ridership.

NC ocean search continues for tall ship's captain

The Coast Guard continues searching the Atlantic 90 miles off the North Carolina coast for the captain of the HMS Bounty, which sank during Hurricane Sandy.

Coast Guard Capt. Joe Kelly said Tuesday that 63-year-old Robin Walbridge from St. Petersburg, Fla., could still be alive in the Gulf Stream waters more than a day after the replica 18th-century sailing vessel sank in high winds and waves. The Coast Guard says the ocean temperature in the search area is nearly 80 degrees.

Kelly says Wallbridge went overboard early Monday when the ship rolled as the deck slid below 18-foot waves.

The Coast Guard rescued 14 crew members by helicopter Monday. Hours later they found 42-year-old Claudene Christian, who was later declared dead.

Astronauts see superstorm Sandy from space station

The superstorm that's ravaging the East Coast is enormous, even when seen from space.

The commander of the International Space Station, Sunita Williams, said Tuesday that she and her crew were able to make out the big swirl at the center of Sandy as it neared land Monday. She says the cloud cover stretched from the Atlantic almost all the way to Chicago. Her family lives in New England, and she's keeping a special watch over what's happening on the Eastern Seaboard.

As for the other big news - the U.S. presidential election - Williams and the one other American on board, Kevin Ford, already have cast their votes. The two filed absentee ballots before rocketing into orbit from Kazakhstan. Ford, who is from Indiana, arrived at the space station just last week.