CBP Surveys Damage from Sandy, Facilitates Arrival of Additional Utility Crews from Canada
More than 500,000 people lost power even before Sandy made landfall Monday night. Reported wind gusts between 50 and 95 were so powerful, sturdy trees and heavy cargo containers fell like children's tumbling blocks. To complicate matters further, a full moon on Monday night powered a surge between 2 - 6 feet higher than normal levels and battered the coast line while eroding beaches and flooding coastal areas and low-lying areas.
"CBP personnel throughout the Mid-Atlantic and northeast were committed to the community, their partners and each other in maintaining safety, security and business operations as normal as possible during this monstrous storm," said Region I Lead Field Coordinator Kevin Weeks, Director of Boston Field Operations. "As we now move from preparations to recovery efforts, CBP remains focused on border security and facilitating trade and travel, and will continue assisting local, state, tribal, federal and international agencies as needed along the east coast."
CBP has and continues to communicate with trade and travel stakeholders, including airport and seaport officials, and the U.S. Coast Guard, FEMA and other federal and state agencies, on business resumption for seaports and airports, and working together on recovery efforts in the impacted areas.
CBP pre-positioned assets and staff in the Mid-Atlantic and northeast before Sandy's landfall to be ready for rapid response to impacted areas. Response teams are on standby for FEMA mission requests for assistance from local, state, federal and tribal agencies.
To further assist in recovery efforts, CBP officials in Vermont worked with local, state, federal and international partners in facilitating the arrival of more than 100 emergency utility crew personnel from Canada, providing a dedicated lane at the land border crossing to assist in expediting their arrival into the U.S.
FEMA and DOD also established Incident Support Bases in Westover, MA and Lakehurst, N.J., to position supplies including water, meals, blankets and other resources closer to impacted areas, and are available upon request.
Due to cruise ships and some 8,000 domestic and international flights being impacted by Hurricane Sandy, CBP urges airline and cruise ship passengers to visit their carrier's website for the most up-to-date information.
Members of the trade community and the public should continue to monitor CBP.gov for updates on port operations, CBP's business resumption and recovery efforts.
CBP also encourages people in the effected areas to be safe and listen to the direction of their state and local officials, as well as remind CBP employees that crisis events can be very stressful and the Employee Assistance Program is available to those who wish to utilize this service.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.