December 2, 2012

"Cold, mold loom as hazards in Sandy disaster zones."

"City officials estimate at least 12,000 New Yorkers are trying to survive in unheated, flood-damaged homes, despite warnings that dropping temperatures could pose a health risk. Many families have returned to coastal homes contaminated with mold or filled with construction dust."

And: "A pregnant Hurricane Sandy victim was booted from her hotel room yesterday and forced to hunt for a place to stay because FEMA dropped the ball on her reservation.... 'I feel like a homeless person . . . like a street rat,'  said [Keri] Christian, who’s expecting a boy in January. 'It’s aggravating and physically demanding. I’m really pissed.'"

49 comments:

ndspinelli said...

After watching the very good doc, The Dust Bowl, and remembering my mom talking about always being hungry during her youth and the profound effect that had on her, I have a hard time being very sympathetic. This country is fucked if we ever really get socked w/ an economic or enviromental diaster..really fucked.

madAsHell said...

Just wait until they control health care!!

edutcher said...

Heckuva job, Barry.

Ah, yes, and it's all good.

Pogo said...

"A pregnant Hurricane Sandy victim was booted from her hotel room yesterday..."

No room at the inn.

Does New York have any mangers?

Hagar said...

It is all Bush's fault!

AprilApple said...

Matt Lauer, Diane Sawyer, Chris Matthews, David Letterman, Nanny Bloomberg, Obama, Biden, Scott Pelly, Geraldo, Shep Smith, and Brian Williams to the rescue.

or not.

Big Mike said...

This is the reason why the US needs to elect Republican presidents; only Republicans are held to results. Barack Obama makes a speech ordering FEMA to cut the red tape, but no one checks back to see whether the red tape actually got cut.

leslyn said...

Why are we paying for her (single, all-to-herself) hotel room anyway? Doesn't she have family? Or at least friends?

wyo sis said...

More proof that relying on any agency except your own is a fool's game. Government won't be there when you need it the most. Plan on it.
Who's helping her? friends, and family
Who's helping the most people in the best ways? friends, family and church
Who will still be there when the photo ops are gone? friends, family and church

rhhardin said...

You can heat with lightbulbs, if you can find the old incandescent ones.

SteveR said...

I'd like to think this is about health but its just about money.

john said...

No word on the whereabouts of Kari Christian's mother, father, sisters, brothers, husband, mother-in-law, father-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, step-sister, step-brother, cousins, second cousins, grandfather, grandmother, aunt, uncle, great aunt, great uncle, next door neighbor, pastor, teacher, boss, co-worker, BFF, college roommate, high school friend, doctor, parole officer, WIC.

All gone. No one left. The hurrican belw them all away. Only FEMA now.

leslyn said...

If you go back to your house in winter after it's been drenched with water and is, under normal considerations, uninhabitable--should cold and mold be a surprise??

It's their choice. The "struggle" is their own.

Pogo said...

In which another fool learns that the government doesn't love you.

leslyn said...

This whole story is a "DUH!"

ricpic said...

This country is fucked if we ever really get socked w/ an economic or environmental disaster...

I respectfully disagree. Parts of this country? No doubt. But do I really care about the inner city as it convulses in the grip of its own incapacities? No. I leave that to the noble "we" leftists. The capable and resourceful will do just fine, or at least as well as can be managed/expected in a crisis.

Ann Althouse said...

"No word on the whereabouts of Kari Christian's mother, father, sisters, brothers, husband, mother-in-law, father-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, step-sister, step-brother, cousins, second cousins, grandfather, grandmother, aunt, uncle, great aunt, great uncle, next door neighbor, pastor, teacher, boss, co-worker, BFF, college roommate, high school friend, doctor, parole officer, WIC."

Well, obviously you didn't read the article. There's a whole lot in there about her husband who is working desperately to get their house back together.

AJ Lynch said...

I think NY disaster victims are much less newsworthy than Norleans victims. That is what I gather from the absence of anguished hand-wringing by the talking heads and Leslyn type commenters.

ironrailsironweights said...

Last week I spent a day at a worksite on the Rockaway Peninsula. FEMA had set up an assistance center in the building's lobby. At any given time there were more FEMA workers than people being helped, and on two occasions when I walked through the lobby a FEMA worker approached me and asked if I needed any disaster assistance; in each case the worker gave off a vibe that was more I'm-bored-and-have-nothing-to-do than I'm-here-to-help.

Tomorrow I'll be back to the same worksite, I'm curious as to whether the FEMA people will still be soliciting for business.

Peter

Ann Althouse said...

"Christian and her husband moved into their New Dorp Beach home three months before Sandy flooded the first floor. Last week, a storm-damaged chimney caused the house to burn down. “I just can’t fathom this,” said Marotto, who burned his hands and back rescuing neighbors during the storm. “I’m doing everything I can to clean up my house. I’ve put myself in harm’s way, and FEMA can’t even let my wife and daughter stay in a hotel.”"

edutcher said...

leslyn said...

If you go back to your house in winter after it's been drenched with water and is, under normal considerations, uninhabitable--should cold and mold be a surprise??

It's their choice. The "struggle" is their own.


His stuff is there. Maybe he really hasn't got anyplace else.

Barry got his big photo op, but left everybody in the lurch (they knew this before the election, so the idea Jersey went for him strongly smells worse than Staten Island).

AJ Lynch said...

In fact Althouse, in five years, I suggest a survey of colleges and ask if they sent busloads of students to do disaster relief in NO and in NY/NJ?

john said...

My bad, sorry.

leslyn said...

Pogo said... In which another fool learns that the government doesn't love you.

Bet she loved the free meals and hotel room, though.

Hurricane Sandy recovery fueled by federal contracts with N.J. businesses

"The U.S. Coast Guard is paying Ken’s Marine $130,000 to pump fuel out of wrecked boats and lift them onto barges with a floating crane.....

"[A boat's] owner doesn’t have insurance for the boat and can’t pay for repairs...."

Really guys, is it too much to ask that you be consistent? In anything other than this story, "big government"--including FEMA, remember?--is evil. Now it's boo hoo hoo for government not taking care of people enough. "Government won't be there when you need it the most," wails wyo sis.

Totally ignored are the thousands of National Guard troops deployed before the storm, thousands of DOD military who responded to help with cleanup and pump millions of gallons of water out of tunnels and subway and the WTF, millions of meals served, thousands of cots, and now free hotel rooms.

Really--which way do you want it?

Or are you just about cheap shots?

leslyn said...

"I’ve put myself in harm’s way...."

Well. There you have it.

leslyn said...

That was supposed to be "water out of the WTC." I corrected it twice. I swear my autospeller is evil. It must have been made by Big Government.

Pogo said...

"Really--which way do you want it?"

You miss the point: they can't even do major disaster stuff right. But they are taking on more and more and won't be able to do that either.

john said...

leslyn said...Or are you just about cheap shots?

Leslyn, we don't have an Oprah to fly in and do a special from the Superdome. We don't have a Sean Penn to row in with his own film crew.

We can't affor to do expensive cheap shots. We're only left with cheap cheap shots.

ironrailsironweights said...

What struggling young couples moves into a "beach home" when they're facing 18 years of childrearing expenses? Obviously, they could not afford the risk of such a home, and might be better now to think of a nice warm apartment to raise their infant that first year...

Most of the "beach houses" that got flooded on Staten Island were not luxury properties. They were small, modestly priced bungalows built as summer houses and over the years converted to year-round use.

Peter

leslyn said...

Peter, the key word in your comment is "were." Past tense.

Chip S. said...

FEMA may be a prime example of an agency that makes things worse but can't be gotten rid of.

If storm response were strictly the responsibility of the states, people would know exactly who to hold accountable--governors. And dealing w/ the aftermath of a major storm would be at the top of a governor's agenda, unlike a president's. People would also have a clearer sense of how much all this help cost them.

But FEMA's very existence wraps a fog bank around the lines of responsibility, and probably raises people's expectations about what they can reasonably expect in the way of help.

Despite all that, any politician who proposed getting rid of FEMA would be excoriated as a heartless Randroid.

Paco Wové said...

FEMA fucks up after Katrina. It's all Bush's fault!

FEMA fucks up after Sandy. Stupid homeowners! Why should government help them?!

ironrailsironweights said...

Sorry Peter. They knew the risks, or should have, when they moved in. Sometimes a beach view is not worth the potential aggravation when the storms come.
Looks like these two crazy kids are finding that out the hard way. They'll survive. Preferably, without neverending taxpayer help...


Well, maybe, but I'm not going to rush to judgment in this particular case. In some places the storm surge in New Dorp and Midland Beach came inland as far as Hylan Boulevard, which is about a mile from the shore. It could well be that this couple's house was far enough inland that they never thought they were at risk.

Peter

Nichevo said...

Speaking of my Rockaways adventures by the way, anyone in the New York area with one or more available 245 / 75 R 16 truck tires please let me know.

gadfly said...


"Cold, mold loom as hazards in Sandy disaster zones."


The Christian Science Monitor cannot have it both ways. It is either cold or it is mold - but not together. Mold will not survive under 40 degrees Fahrenheit.

If you must live in a house that has moldy walls and surfaces, you can temporarily tack plastic sheeting on the walls to act a barrier. Hard surfaces can be scrubbed with that magical cleaning combination known as "soap and water."

But nobody told FEMA and northeast liberals would never act without government permission and monetary help

Sam L. said...

Oh, no. FEMA is nigh-on perfect now that Obama owns it.

Sam L. said...

Well, the "victims" of Sandy are white, and vanilla don't get no respect.

Nichevo said...

Well, gadfly, I can tell you that driving down in the mornings it seems to always be in the thirties, but since I don't sit in my truck with the thermometer during the afternoon I couldn't tell you what the high is. I do know that the director of the center and the engineer and the city engineer are all very concerned about this stuff and Petri dish or no, all the sheetrock up to the 4 foot water line is getting replaced. they have already had the walls scrubbed, but apparently soap and water won't quite do for them, nor Saran Wrap. I suppose they are just picky. Of course they are government funded, so they don't have to make do like scrubs.

Nichevo said...

Wall to wall Negroes where I'm working, Sam. Far Rockaway is poor. But talking points are always glib like that.

carrie said...

I think hurricane Sandy was a hoax and that it never really happened. If it had really happened and people were still really suffering, you'd be hearing about it on the news and someone would be blamed.

Joe said...

..."[A boat's] owner doesn’t have insurance for the boat and can’t pay for repairs...."....

Is it too much to ask that people who deliberately choose to not buy insurance be help accountable?

I'm willing to give people a hand up and cut people a break for circumstances beyond their control--perhaps the owner tried to get insurance but a dick insurance guy turned him down.

I'm also curious where your generosity ends? It's okay to help lots of people affected by the hurricane, but not a few by a winter storm?

It seems that the motivation here is that something dramatic happened, so something dramatic must be done.

Kelly said...

I can't imagine. We had a slow leak from our dishwasher that was seeping under our (new) hardwood floors. My eyes swelled, I got ear infections, I couldn't breath. Had no idea what was going on until the leak made its way to the basement and was dripping out of the pot lights. The kitchen and part of the basement had to be gutted. Lots of mold was growing. Within a week of the demo my symptoms began clearing up. It was wonderful to take a deep breath once again.

These people really are in for a lot of health problems.

wyo sis said...

The human toll is terrible and it will continue for a long time. The problem isn't that people need help, it's that they think it's going to come from places that it won't.
Government has a role in helping people in these situations, but it's role is not to be the daddy, decision maker and on the spot relief. There won't be help from government for sometimes 3 or 4 days, and maybe never. People in the community are the people who are closest and most able to help. Local charities, churches, neighbors and most of all family are the people who will be the most help.
I'm not pretending it isn't damn hard to be pregnant and have a toddler and no home. It's hard, and having something you thought you could depend on fall through is devastating. Even people with the best will in the world make mistakes. Government is not even people, it's not nimble or personal or flexible and government has no personal stake in your well being.
One of the important lessons in Sandy and Katrina is that you had better be prepared to fend for yourself, and after that you can depend on family, then church, then community, then independent charities and last of all government.
In situations where there are so many victims and everyone needs help the ones who will get help the fastest are the ones who help themselves and the people around them.

leslyn said...

Joe said... ..."[A boat's] owner doesn’t have insurance for the boat and can’t pay for repairs...."....

Is it too much to ask that people who deliberately choose to not buy insurance be held accountable?

Sorry, Joe, that was exactly my point. I didn't make it clear enough.

The dilemma of the Coast Guard is that all these marinas have to be checked for hazards and pollutants. They can't do it all, of course, so the government pays contractors to do it.

In the case I quoted, I believe they had to find and clean out the fuel tanks, because of course the owner hadn't emptied them before the storm.

The boat had five planks missing, so they left it on the bottom.

new york said...

https://www.facebook.com/#!/photo.php?fbid=3849827136259&set=a.1120079334270.2017441.1595640107&type=1&theater

gadfly said...

Nichevo:

Thank you for making my point about NE liberals. Green technologists just have to be liberal.

My comment suggested temporary solutions for making a moldy house livable while awaiting permanent repairs. If walls were subjected to four feet of water, of course the sheetrock has to be replaced.

As for soap and water, I can tell you from personal experience that it works.

However, if you ask one of those basement flooding companies out to collect insurance payments, then mold is suddenly dangerous to your health and safety and must be handled using special protective clothing and face masks with filters.

I asked my grandmother instead.

elkh1 said...

They voted for Big Govt to take care of them, and they are getting what they wish for. Boo Hoo!

McTriumph said...

Let's pretend that you just moved into a band newly built house. A house that was rained on three or four times while it was being framed, before the roof was sheeted and shingled. Do you think there is no mold in the walls of that home? Sure there's mold, but it dies when dry leaving the spores which when whetted creates mold. The real problem with mold/mildew/damp is that is degrades the structure of the wood and drywall over time.

The fix is simple, pull off the drywall, spray with bleach and dry out as fast as possible, re-drywall. Simple, if you have the a little help and cash for the drywall.

I'll bet back east you have red tape, inspections of all kinds by only approved (union)& licensed tradesmen. Tradesmen only licensed to that specific local jurisdiction.

Evelyn Flores said...

It's very bad fact that sandy did with us but we need to stay together. Rescue homeowners from hurricane sandy