As residents and businesses across New Jersey spent the holiday weekend trying to clean up damage from last week’s storm, rescue workers resumed searching for two friends whose car was caught in the flood.
Nidhi Rana, 18, and Ayush Rana, 21, were last seen Wednesday night as their car began floating towards a spot where the water is running underground towards the Passaic River. Passa Mayor Hector Lora said in a text on Sunday that a dozen submarines participated in the search using a state political air unit.
Gov. Phil Murphy, who on Saturday night said the death toll in the garden state had reached 27, said at least four people remained missing after what he called a “Historic” storm. He said he had already sought federal assistance and would continue to ask for more “because we need it.”
“We had rain in many communities in two or three hours that was equivalent to what they usually get in a month or two,” Murphy told CBS ‘”Face The Nation” on Sunday. “Unfortunately, we think this is part of what we are going to face, more frequency and more intensity.”
The remnants of Hurricane Ida killed at least 50 people in six eastern states after it brought historic rain on Wednesday, leading to deadly floods and sudden storm surges.
President Joe Biden is scheduled to be in New Jersey and New York City to investigate storm damage, according to the White House.
When Sunday appeared at a subway station in New York that was exposed to severe flooding, Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer renewed the call for Congress to pass a two-part infrastructure bill and a reconciliation bill that would dedicate billions to improving flood resilience and tackling the broader effects of climate change.
“Ida was another wake-up call to New York and a nation where too many are hitting the snooze button by big and bold changes,” Schumer said at 28th Street station. Videos showed rivers flowing from the street down to the station’s platform and tracks.
“Each of these hurricanes gets a name,” Schumer said. “It’s time to make one for ourselves as a nation that can keep doing the great things and the hard work that saves the planet and grows our economy.”
In New Jersey, a victim who died the day after the storm was apparently electrically shocked while trying to connect a generator, authorities said. Aventino Soares, 58, of Bloomfield, was found by police around 11:30 p.m. Thursday on the side of an Ampere Parkway home, Bloomfield police told NJ.com.
According to his obituary, Soares was one of the founders of a non-profit organization that tried to repair a church in Portugal where he was born. He came to the United States in 1986 and lived in Newark before settling in Bloomfield in 1997. He leaves behind his wife of 41 years, three children and several grandchildren, his obituary said.
In Connecticut, friends and colleagues remembered State Police Sgt. Brian Mohl as a caring and generous person who acted as a father figure to younger troopers and enjoyed himself in his son’s exploits on the football field.
Mohl’s crosses were swept away around 3:30 on Thursday near the Pomperaug River in Woodbury. Diving teams initially found the empty car and then found Mohl’s body further down the river.
“He would take guys in if they needed a place to live,” the state police sergeant said. Corey Craft told the Hartford Courant. “He was one behind the scenes with a heart of gold. The world lost a good man. ”
A wake for Mohl is scheduled for Sept. 8 at the Xfinity Theater in Hartford, and his funeral will be held there the following day.
A school in New Jersey damaged by flooding is likely to remain closed for the rest of the calendar year, an NJ Advance Media official told NJ.com.
Superintendent Michael Burke said there was little chance that Cresskill Middle / High School in Bergen County, which houses about 1,000 students, would be “even close to being ready by 2022 at the earliest.”
The district has received permission from state education officials to conduct virtual classes when the school year begins Wednesday, he said. Officials are looking for places off campus to serve as classrooms and hope to have personal instruction in “at least some grades” by November, he said.
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