NEW YORK — Superstorm Sandy caused one of the worst residential fires in New York City history, a blaze that burned unchecked for hours because floodwaters spurred by Sandy's 13-foot storm surge blocked firefighters from responding. Strengthened by wind gusts upward of 80 mph, the fire ultimately consumed nearly 130 homes in the heart of this tiny oceanfront neighborhood in Queens.
It was a horror story that resulted in some of the most memorable images of Sandy’s wrath, including an iconic photo of a singed Virgin Mary statue that stood amid the ashes of homes that once were standing.
What the fire didn’t destroy, the water tried to — and in many cases, did. Of Breezy Point’s 2,800 homes, roughly 200 were destroyed by the flood and more than 1,500 were severely damaged.
That includes Peggy Smith’s home along Atlantic Walk, where the entire first floor was washed away by Sandy. But she knows it could have been worse.
“I am one of the lucky ones,” said Smith, whose family roots in BreezyRead More »from Burned and flooded Breezy Point still trying to rebuild after Sandy