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Mayor Gray Outlines Hurricane Sandy Recovery for the District

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Mayor Gray Outlines Hurricane Sandy Recovery for the District

DC Public Schools, DC government to be open tomorrow; Mayor says DC has fared well and thoughts and prayers are with people in New York and New Jersey

(Washington, DC)–Mayor Vincent C. Gray today said the District had weathered Hurricane Sandy well and that officials from the District government and utility and transit partners were striving to get the city back in working order in time to return to regular business Wednesday morning.  

Mayor Gray updated members of the media on the District’s recovery from the storm after a tour of damage that took him across the city.

“Before Hurricane Sandy struck, I said the District government was ready to meet this challenge–and over the last few days, we proved that,” Mayor Gray said. “I want to thank the government workers and private partners who were on the job before and during the storm, and those who will continue working hard during this recovery period to return everything to normal and get the District back to business as usual. I also want to thank our residents for heeding our warnings to stay inside during the worst of the storm, and we appreciate their patience as we get the District back up and running in its aftermath.”

As of noon, the most severe part of the storm had passed the Washington region, with rain subsiding through the remainder of Tuesday.  Winds that may gust up to 40 mph are expected to continue through this evening.

District officials and federal, regional and utility partners will continue to work together to ensure the District’s residents, businesses and infrastructure are operational after the storm.

“We do remain vigilant of the threat posed by flooding on the Potomac River and its tributaries caused by the heavy rainfall and snowfall Sandy has produced across our region,” Mayor Gray said. “The Potomac may crest late tomorrow evening well above flood stage, and we will continue monitoring the situation and making preparations to mitigate the effects of any river flooding.”


  • The DC government and DC Public Schools will be open on time tomorrow, with the possible exception of a handful of facilities that may not have their power restored.
  • Pepco is presently reporting just over 2,000 customers affected by power outages in the District. The highest concentrations of outages are in Wards 3, 4, 5 and 7.
  • President Obama has signed a presidential disaster declaration for the District, which provides federal assistance to help the city defray the extra costs the storm will impose. 
  • A list of shelters is available on the DC Government’s Hurricane Sandy website. The shelters provide for basic human needs for those exposed to dangerous conditions or in the event homes are not habitable. Shelters provide cots, blankets and water. Shelters are anticipated to be open through Tuesday night.
  • DPW tow trucks will be deployed as necessary to remove vehicles blocking roadways.
  • Intersections: As of 11 am, DDOT reported that only two traffic signals (at North Capitol Street and Fort Drive and Harewood Road and Clermont Drive) were out. DDOT traffic control officers will be deployed to direct traffic where necessary.
  • All intersections with traffic signals in-flash have been restored.
  • As of 11 am, there were 236 trees reported down in the District. Of those, DDOT reported 21 had been resolved and that DDOT crews were working on 215 more.

DDOT reports the following minor incidents and street closures:

  • 3900 block of Martin Luther King Avenue is blocked from Atlantic Street to Xenia Street, SE in both directions due to low-hanging wires.
  • 28th & R Street SE. 28th Street is closed in both directions due to a tree in the roadway. R Street is open
  • Sheriff Road is blocked at 51st Street due to a downed tree
  • 1652 Fort Davis Drive: Cleared. Roadways are open
  • 37th & Ely, SE: Cleared. Roadways open
  • 1081 14th Street, SE: Tree on two vehicles; Roadways are open
  • 3000 Block of 10th Street, NE: Large tree blocking the roadway

DPW will resume street cleaning on Wednesday. Regular garbage collections for Monday and Tuesday will be rescheduled. For details about your collection time, please visit DPW’s website.

Metrorail: Service resumes today at 2 pm. On all lines, trains will operate at Sunday service intervals until closing.

Metrobus: Service resumes today at 2 pm. Buses will operate on a Sunday schedule on Tuesday. Certain bus routes that do not operate on Sundays will resume service on a weekday schedule. 

DC Circulator:  Service resumes today at 2 pm. 

MetroAccess: Service remains cancelled today and is expected to be restored on Wednesday.

For ongoing updates about the District’s response to and recovery from Hurricane Sandy, visit this website: http://hsema.dc.gov/page/hurricane-sandy

To receive important text messages about the latest information on weather, traffic, closings and more, sign up for ALERT DC at textalert.ema.dc.gov.

DC government agencies are maintaining a constant presence on Twitter and other social-media outlets and will provide crucial information as the recovery effort continues. Please follow the Mayor (@MayorVinceGray), DPW (@dcdpw), DDOT (@ddotdc), DPR (@dcdpr) and DC Water (@dcwater) on Twitter for information on Hurricane Sandy response, using #SandyDC as a hashtag.

Tips for Residents

Dealing with Downed Trees

Residents are reminded to stay clear of broken and hanging tree branches, which can fall at any time. 

  • Please report any downed tree branches by calling 311.

Residents are also reminded to stay away from downed wires, as they could be energized and electrical contact could be fatal. Report downed wires to Pepco by calling 1.877.PEPCO62

Power and Water Outages

To report a power outage, please call Pepco at 1.877.PEPCO62. Customers may report outages online at pepco.com or download Pepco’s smart phone app, pepco.com/mobileapp to report and track outages. To report a water outage, residents can call DC Water at (202) 612-3400


Motorists are reminded to treat dark intersections as four-way stops and to avoid driving through standing water.