By Joseph Iemma
It has been three years since Super Storm Sandy ravaged America’s eastern seaboard. In terms of force, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia were hit hardest by the storm. Sandy made landfall in the Carolinas when she was bordering category three status. However, these states were prepared for Sandy, since they had been hit by hurricanes before. The tristate area, including New York, was not prepared.
Sandy shut off the power on LIU Post’s campus for three days. “We didn’t know when we’d have power again,” said Christina Scorazzi, a senior Broadcasting major, who was living on campus at the time. “It was my freshman year and it was just my first semester. Campus was in disarray; it was chaotic and whoever was on campus for the storm was in full out panic mode. People were out all hours of the night after the storm; it was crazy here.”
Post’s buildings didn’t regain power until the third day. There were issues with the auxiliary power generators, but by that day, students who lived on campus were told to go home. For approximately two weeks, campus was closed for cleanup and minor repairs.
“We all remember the images of Staten Island,” said Lisa Goodwell, a senior Chemistry major, who commuted to Post at the time. “In my home town of Whitestone (Queens), which is right off the water, the storm surge swamped most our beaches, and even some houses off the water.”
“A lot of us couldn’t even get to campus during the storm; even a few days after, you couldn’t even make the commute,” said Beth Funfgeld, Facility Service Response Coordinator at LIU Post. Funfgeld said, “Luckily, we suffered no real damage to our infrastructure, but trees were everywhere, that and wind really knocked out our power.” As Funfgeld recalled, there were no calls for assistance from students living on campus. “They actually conducted themselves well; they made the situation better, much easier for that matter; which was great because on the home front, my house of 25 years was lost to the storm.”
Funfgeld has since moved on, and Post has moved on as well. However, Funfgeld believes Post can withstand another super storm, “It was our first time being hit by a storm like that, a mega storm, but
I think we would handle a super storm like Sandy much better [if one such as Sandy were to hit again]. For example, we’ve added better water pumps, much better reserve power generators, and we are confident in our Public Safety team. We’ll be much more efficient, not just because we’re better equipped, but because we dealt with one before.”
Representatives from the Office of Public Safety would not comment about Post’s preparedness for another storm.