Hurricane Sandy’s Impacts

Hurricane Sandy brought high winds and a record 14-foot storm surge to New York Harbor. Many of the city’s wastewater treatment plants and pumping stations, located along the water’s edge, were flooded or damaged. Eight plants experienced treatment disruptions due to flooding or power failure. Dedicated sewage treatment workers, tradespeople, and engineers worked quickly to repair the damage and limit the discharge of raw or partially treated wastewater. Within 96 hours of the storm, the city was fully treating 99 percent of wastewater. This chart shows the increase in wastewater flow during the storm, the result of seawater entering the sewer system through manholes, catch basins, and storm-damaged tide gates.