Sept. 4 (UPI) — President Joe Biden will travel to New York and New Jersey next week to review some of the widespread damage caused by the remnants from Hurricane Ida as the region continued to recover from the flash flooding, tornados and high winds it produced this week.
The storm was blamed for the deaths of more than 40 people, 23 in New Jersey alone. Connecticut, Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania and Virginia all reported deaths from the storm that created record rainfall throughout the Northeast, catching many of its victims by surprise.
In Gloucester County, N.J. where tornados stunned residents Wednesday night, weekend traffic moved to a crawl along U.S. Route 322 as emergency crews removed trees and tried to repair power poles that were literally snapped in half and pulled from the ground.
“This storm has been incredible, not only here but all the way up the East Coast,” Biden said in a news conference Friday in LaPlace, La., where the storm caused heavy structural damage. “I’ve been spending time with — in talking with the governor a lot, but, in the meantime, also with governors of my state of Delaware and Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York, where there are more deaths than you have here.”
Biden, who is spending time at his home in Wilmington, Del., this Labor Day weekend, will visit Manville, N.J. to survey the damage there along with Jamaica and Queens, N.Y., which suffered sustained flash flooding, according to NJ.com.
Many residents in the Ida-affected area in southeast Louisiana and southern Mississippi faced another day without fans or air conditioning with temperatures soaring in the high 80s and low 90s because of lack of electricity.
According to Poweroutage.us, more than 731,000 people remained without electricity as the heat index and humidity made temperatures feel like the mid-90s.
In New York City, a memorial grew Saturday for a family that drowned in their basement apartment after floodwaters engulfed them. Mourners arrived as crews removed debris from the basement where Phamatee Ramskriet, 43, and Khrishah Ramskriet, 22, lived before dying from the flooding.
Officials said New York sanitation crews will work through the Labor Day holiday, including Monday, to remove damage from the storm.
NYC Emergency Management and the NYC Department of Social Services says the service centers in all five of its boroughs will stay open for in-person support and information on essential resources.