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Bloomberg warns of a slow recovery

<div>Says subway, and power, could be down for days.<br /></div>

Mayor Michael Bloomberg estimated this morning that it will be days before the city gets back on its feet after a storm that killed 10 New Yorkers.

Bloomberg said the two major priorities are getting power back on in the city and subways back on the rails – but trains alone could be down for four or five days, he said.

"This was a devastating storm, maybe the worst that we have ever experienced,” he said, later adding, “Given the magnitude of the storm, we have probably gotten through this better than some people might have thought.”

He said he hopes that the MTA can get buses working by tomorrow, and he also said roads should be clear by then.

But in the meantime, more than 650,000 people are without power, and today may be only the beginning, he said.

“Power may be out in lots of places for two or three days, and maybe even a little bit longer than that,” Bloomberg said.

Ten people died in the New York City area, he said, and first responders were fighting fires and emergencies throughout the night, he said, including 23 serious fires.

“Tragically, we expect that number to go up as information continues to come in,” he said, anticipating the aftermath of a “terrible” fire that destroyed 80 houses in Breezy Point, Queens.

More than 6,100 people are in 76 emergency shelters, which will remain open, he said, “until people displaced by the storm can return to their homes or find temporary housing.”

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Long Island took the brunt of the burden, with 930,000 people without power in Long Island, which he said is 90 percent of Long Island.

He cautioned, “This is not going to be a short-term situation. This is a long-term recovery and reconstruction effort.”

Bloomberg warned curious New Yorkers to be cautious today.

“It’s fun to look, and it’s fun to challenge nature, but nature is a lot more powerful than we are,” he said, “and we just don’t need any more fatalities.”




 
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