NPR Blogs

The Two-Way
7:23 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

Army Corps Sends 'National Unwatering SWAT Team' To Help With NYC Subway

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 8:37 pm

"The New York City subway system is 108 years old, but it has never faced a disaster as devastating as what we experienced last night."

That's how Joseph J. Lhota, the chairman of the Metropolitan Transit Authority, explained the damage caused by Superstorm Sandy to the venerable mass transit system on Tuesday.

The problem is so big that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers had deployed an elite 12-member team to help out.

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The Two-Way
5:31 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

Some Bit Of Good News: Philadelphia 'Dodged A Bullet'

Philadelphia after Superstorm Sandy.
Kristina K. Dymond via Flickr

The center of Superstorm Sandy passed less than 25 miles from Philadelphia. In most cases that would mean that the city of brotherly love would have been whipped with the strongest of winds from the weather system.

But Philly, the country's fifth-largest city, emerged today fairly unscathed.

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The Two-Way
5:27 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

As Sandy's Snow Buries W.Va. Town, 'Everybody Just Pitches In'

From left, Dale McKey, Karin McKey and George Secrist return home from an outing into the snow on Tuesday.
Maggie Starbard NPR

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 6:09 pm

It's not easy to get around the back roads of West Virginia right now. Our four-wheel drive couldn't make it up the hill to David Arnold's place near Fayetteville, so he came down to get us in his Chevy Tahoe.

We spin through the snow, through archways made of broken tree branches. The drive is worth the effort; Arnold runs a whitewater rafting business, and he lives right on the edge of the New River gorge.

From his back porch, we can look 900 feet down to the river or 3,000 feet straight across, through falling snow to the other side. It's just gorgeous.

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The Two-Way
4:29 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

The Force Is Strong With This One: Disney Buys Lucasfilm For $4B

In this handout image provided by Disney, Star Wars creator George Lucas has a playful lightsaber duel with Jedi Mickey Mouse at Disney's Hollywood Studios theme park at Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., on Aug. 14, 2010. Disney announced Tuesday that it was buying Lucasfilm Ltd. for $4.05 billion.
Getty Images

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 6:36 am

Fanboys and -girls, get ready to celebrate – or be disappointed: Disney announced Tuesday that it was buying Lucasfilm Ltd. for $4 billion, and continue the Star Wars franchise with the first of new series of films in 2015.

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The Two-Way
3:55 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

Keeping Sandy's Economic Impact In Perspective

A truck drives through a flooded street caused by Hurricane Sandy in New York City's Financial District on Tuesday.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 10:32 am

When Superstorm Sandy slammed into the East Coast on Monday, the fragile U.S. economy was just sitting there, stuck in a sluggish-growth mode.

Now, as the massive cleanup begins, business owners, workers and investors are wondering what impact the megastorm ultimately will have on their wallets. Did Sandy weigh down economic activity enough to drown the recovery? Or will the rebuilding efforts boost growth over the longer term?

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The Two-Way
3:29 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

Superstorm Shines A Light On Power Grid Vulnerabilities

A street light and utility pole brought down by Hurricane Sandy lay on the street in Avalon, N.J. About 2.5 million customers had no power Tuesday in New Jersey.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 4:09 pm

The storm that has spawned so many worst-ever superlatives managed a few more when it comes to electricity, with record-breaking power outages across 18 states stretching from Michigan and Indiana to Maine and North Carolina, according to a Department of Energy assessment.

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The Two-Way
3:27 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

Captain's Judgment Questioned After Sinking Of Tall Ship

The 180-foot sailing vessel Bounty goes down off the North Carolina coast on Monday.
USCG United States Coast Guard

Originally published on Fri December 14, 2012 12:41 pm

When the HMS Bounty set sail in 1787, Captain William Bligh had only his instincts to safely complete a journey from England to the South Pacific island of Tahiti. Last week, Robin Walbridge, captain of a replica of Bligh's ship of mutiny fame, had every modern weather-forecasting resource to plan a voyage from New London, Conn., to St. Petersburg, Fla.

But it didn't keep him from a fatal misjudgment.

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The Salt
3:26 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

Oregon State's New Cheese Plant Aims To Break The Rind

Oregon State University food science and technology students mix a batch of havarti cheese in a cheesemaking class.
Lynn Ketchum OSU

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 7:04 pm

It's football season at Oregon State University, and that means tailgating, grilling, and ... cheese?

When we think of Oregon, we don't necessarily think of cheese — maybe a nice Pinot Noir, but not cheese. But this fall, Oregon State University's new cheese plant rolled out its first batch of product: a specialty alpine cheese (like Swiss, Comte or Gruyere) dubbed by the students "Beaver Classic." It's a mild cheese, with nutty flavors like caramelized onions.

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The Two-Way
3:22 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

VIDEO: Sandy's Damage As Seen From The Sky

Just how bad was Sandy's storm surge along the New Jersey coast?

The New Jersey National Guard posted aerial footage of Seaside Heights, N.J., which is about an hour north of Atlantic City. The footage shows vast destruction and streets that have just been covered in sand:

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Krulwich Wonders...
2:27 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

Will We 'Fix' The Weather? Yes. Should We Fix The Weather? Hmmm

YouTube

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 3:58 pm

Because I'm at home, wind raging outside, trees bending, leaves flying, a hurricane descending, subways suspended, my day upended, I can't stop thinking: "What is Maureen Raymo thinking?"

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Shots - Health News
2:25 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

Superstorm Sandy Takes Toll On New York Hospitals

Ambulances line up outside New York University Langone Medical Center to evacuate patients after backup generators failed when Sandy knocked out power in Lower Manhattan Monday.
John Minchillo AP

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 2:41 pm

When a storm hits, people count on the local hospital to be ready — no matter what.

But when Sandy slammed into New York City, one of Manhattan's biggest hospitals buckled. After the power went out in Lower Manhattan, New York University Langone Medical Center's backup power generators failed, too.

That led to the evacuation of more than 200 patients to other hospitals, including Mount Sinai Medical Center and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

Patients were still being moved Tuesday morning, the Huffington Post reported.

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The Two-Way
1:59 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

At New York University Medical Center, A Dramatic, Critical Evacuation

Hospital workers evacuate patient Deborah Dadlani from NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City on Monday.
Michael Heiman Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 3:29 pm

One of the most dramatic stories to come out of New York last night is the critical evacuation of New York University Langone Medical Center.

As CNN reports it, around 7:45 p.m. Monday, the hospital's basement started taking on water. At one point, the "lower floors and elevator shafts filled with 10 to 12 feet of water."

The hospital's main power went out and then the backup power failed.

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The Two-Way
1:40 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

A Morphing Storm: As Sandy Moves Inland, Snow And Winds Follow

An ambulance is stuck in over a foot of snow off of Highway 33 West, near Belington, W.Va. on Oct. 30. Superstorm Sandy buried parts of West Virginia under more than a foot of snow.
Robert Ray AP

Even though Sandy has switched from hurricane to post-tropical cyclone, it's still a formidable storm. The latest forecast predicts strong winds and coastal storm surges up to four feet in some places. Areas from the eastern Great Lakes region to the mid-Atlantic and up to southern New England can also expect an additional inch of rain.

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The Two-Way
1:24 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

New Bombing In Syria After Ineffective Truce Ends

An image taken from video obtained from the Shaam News Network, authenticated by AP reporting, shows attempts to rescue the wounded in Idlib, northern Syria following heavy bombing from military warplanes.
Uncredited ASSOCIATED PRESS

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 7:46 am

It's been just a day after the grudging cease-fire expired between the Syrian government and rebels. Reports from Syria say government warplanes are bombing rebel-held areas with even greater vehemence.

Witnesses told Reuters there were air strikes in the eastern suburbs of Damascus, the city of Homs in central Syria, and a town in the north that's on the main highway between Damascus and Aleppo.

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