Fresh Out

Sandy’s Shortages: Power, Gas, Water & More (PHOTOS)

See The Daily Beast’s list of goods, services, and supplies, from power to water to housing, that the storm made scarce.

AP Photo (2); Getty Images (2)

AP Photo (2); Getty Images (2)

Hurricane Sandy knocked out power and sparked three-hour lines for fuel. From water to housing, to fish, and even bees, the other goods, supplies, and services that the storm made scarce.

Julio Cortez / AP Photo


Downed pipelines and the shuttered Port of New York caused a massive gas shortage in New York City and the surrounding areas following Hurricane Sandy. At some gas stations in New Jersey, customers had to wait more than three hours to fill up. Tensions mounted in the region as fights broke out in some gas lines—one man in Queens, New York, was charged with threatening another with a gun. Nearly a week after the hurricane hit, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he was expecting it to be a “short-term problem,” though he admitted, “We’re not 100 percent sure when the system will be up and running where you won’t feel any effect whatsoever.” He added, “Now is not the time to be using the car if you don’t need to.”

Richard Drew / AP Photo


Some areas of New York City were still lacking power and water days after the storm hit. On Nov. 4, Gov. Cuomo issued an executive order to make it easier for beverage companies to donate potable water. “It is critical that safe drinking-water supplies can reach New Yorkers in need as soon as possible. The actions taken by the state today to help companies distribute bottled water to hard-hit communities are the right and practical thing to do, while still protecting the public’s health and safety.”

Emile Wamsteker / Bloomberg via Getty Images


Due to power shortages and Hurricane Sandy’s devastation, up to 40,000 New Yorkers are in need of temporary housing; and as cold temperatures settle in, nearly 2 million people in the region remain without power. Many coastal homes were destroyed or flooded, and many of New York City’s housing projects—also near the water—are now uninhabitable. “This is going to be a massive, massive housing problem,” Cuomo said. Though Mayor Michael Bloomberg has promised that none of the displaced people will be homeless, he himself admits, “We don’t have a lot of empty housing in this city.” As a result, the city has opened up heating shelters, and FEMA has offered to supply trailers to the city if need be.

Stan Honda / AFP / Getty Images


Beer may have not been on everybody’s list of survival supplies during the hurricane, but Sandy might end up having a negative impact on the beer industry overall. In New York City, multiple breweries sustained damage, with one brewery reportedly sustaining nearly $100,000 damage. Some beer distributors were flooded and Union Beer Distributors reportedly claimed a loss on their entire stock. The storm also devastated parts of the New Jersey shore, a party haven where many beers are sold, which could further hurt the industry. A spokesman for the Beer Institute said, “You think about all those small taverns and restaurants and cafes which are going to be altered forever. Is that going to affect business? Yeah, it is.”

Frank Rumpenhorst / AFP / Getty Images


The Big Apple’s first commercial apiary, located at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, was abuzz during Hurricane Sandy—for all the wrong reasons. At least 18 hives located on a pier—each of which holds an estimated 40,000 bees—were destroyed. Despite the damage, chief beekeeper Chase Emmons is confident that the 2013 Honey Festival will go on.

Paul J. Richards / AFP / Getty Images

Heating Oil

Sandy also left heating-oil distributors scrambling and rationing supplies in some areas. The Northeast is the world’s largest heating-oil market, with roughly 5.8 million homes relying on the product. Even before Sandy, heating-oil supplies were unusually low in the region, but after the hurricane, distribution of the product essentially collapsed in some areas. And with unseasonably cold weather headed in, people without power who rely on heating oil are going to face problems. The U.S. government recently announced plans to release 48,000 barrels of ultra-low-sulfur diesel from its Northeast emergency heating-oil reserve to help, but that is only the equivalent of about eight hours of New York State’s peak winter heating-oil consumption.

Lannis Waters / Landov


Although the storm mostly affected the East Coast, inland states that rely on the coast for their seafood imports also experienced problems. In Ohio, one seafood wholesaler said he expected his sales to be down by as much as 50 percent in the coming weeks, since Atlantic fishing operations and shipments by air and highway from the East Coast were put on hold. “When you have something of this magnitude—600 miles wide—there’s nothing you can do,” he said.