I saw this a short time ago during Chris Christie’s latest briefing. Basically there were urgent warnings to get out Saturday, and it appears many of the residents of Atlantic City, at the urging of the mayor, ignored them. Buses were available but nobody got on them.
Now Atlantic City is under water.
Gov. Chris Christie this evening issued an angry rebuke to Atlantic City Mayor Lorenzo Langford for allowing people to shelter at schools in that community rather than evacuate. Christie said one school is now flooded.
“For those elected officials who decided to ignore my admonition, this is now your responsibility,” Christie said at a news conference at the State Police Regional Operations Intelligence Center, the location of the emergency operations command center.
The governor said he cannot quantify how many people decided to shelter at the schools within the city, but he said no rescues will occur from this evening until the morning. He said a 21-member strike team is in place with boats to assist come dawn.
Christie said he also does not know if people are still stuck in one school near the bay that has flooded.
“We’re at a moment now where evacuation is no longer possible and we’re no longer able to come and rescue people,” Christie said.
At a news conference Saturday, Langford and his administration acknowledged their poor exit strategy during Tropical Storm Irene last year would likely cause many of the city’s nearly 40,000 residents to stay put during Sandy to protect their homes and stores.
“Last year we had many residents on school buses, especially elderly residents, for hours at a time,” said Tom Foley, the city’s director of emergency management. “It was totally unacceptable. We think we have a better plan this time.”
How’s that working out now, Mr. Foley? Here’s what he actually had to say tonight.
“We’re trying to deal with a hurricane, we’re not worried about that b.s.,” city Office of Emergency Management Director Tom Foley said via cell phone. “We’re trying to move people right now.”
Unimaginable incompetence at work here. Now they’re trying to move people as the storm makes landfall?
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