WDEL Blog: Allan Loudell

Open Blog: Governor Markell scales back driving restrictions (as of 8:30 a.m., Tuesday)

Offering this special blog to allow you to post any comments about the hurricane, including your general observations about rainfall and wind intensity; power outages; scary or unusual moments; comparisons to any past hurricanes you've experienced.

So post your observations here, and keep a battery-powered radio handy just in case. We're committed to wall-to-wall coverage. We were live & local all night long...

UPDATE: DelDOT crews have been assessing highway & road conditions. Governor Markell has lifted the Level 2 driving ban, as of 8:30 a.m. You are now permitted to return to the roads. But sections of many roads, particularly coastal roads, remain closed.

Once more vehicles return to the roads, we could see many accidents, though, with the slippery heaps of leaves on the pavement.

Tens of thousands of Delawareans remain without power. It could take days, perhaps a week or more, to restore power to all Delmarva Power customers. With the continuing winds, Delmarva can't deploy bucket trucks to begin repairs. DP currently refuses to provide estimates on WHEN it expects to restore power to particular neighborhoods and communities.

I urge you to check out some of the photos on WDEL's FACEBOOK page.

This storm, I fear, has split people in a fundamental way: Those who personally came out of the storm okay, no downed trees in your yard or immediate neighborhood, no power outages. For some of you, the Governor has been too cautious in immediately lifting the driving ban.

For other Delawareans - with flooded-out homes, missing or waterlogged property, and facing the prospect of up to a week without power - this storm represents a calamity.

Posted at 2:50pm on October 29, 2012 by Allan Loudell

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Comments on this post:

Mon, Oct 29, 2012 4:13pm
My personal observation concerning Sandy is that Markell and Obama closed our state for rain... thanks to them, I lost an entire day's wage due to rain. And, it appears, my job will be closed again tomorrow...that's where a nanny state leads...right over the border in PA everything was business as usual. Thanks again Markell.

Mike from Delaware
Mon, Oct 29, 2012 5:31pm
EarlGrey: Better for both the Governor and the Prez to err in the direction of safety for their people than to err the other way causing loss of life. We aren't out of the woods yet. We've still got tonight.

A few years ago, we had a rather serious blizzard here. My wife worked at the Mall then. It was a Saturday, so I was off. Do you know that blasted Mall stayed open all day and didn't close or allow its employees to leave UNTIL the state finally declared a state of emergency. Of course by then the roads were in rather crappy shape due to drifting, heavy snow, etc. My wife doesn't drive, so I had to dig out twice that day once to take her to work, and once to get her. I can't imagine her driving in that, but as a majority of employees at the Mall are females, many wives and girlfriends were forced to drive in that mess. Naturally I almost got stuck both times on a hill that DELDOT hadn't plowed recently prior to me having to get behind some idiot who didn't know how to drive in snow.

We're not talking about something essential like WDEL, the hospital, or police, fire, etc., that actually serves the public welfare even in such times. There was no reason for anyone to be at that stupid mall that day, but some businesses are so greedy that they don't care if they put their employees in harm's way, so long as they don't lose a day's earnings from other ignorant people who are too stupid to stay the heck home in such weather. So NO, I totally disagree with you and believe both Governor Christie in NJ and our Governor Markell and yes, Prez Obama did the right thing. Sorry you and your business lost money today. So far no lives have been lost in Delaware.

Mon, Oct 29, 2012 5:40pm
You can really turn an event like this into a political discussion, Earl? Unbelievable... Wah, you lost wages. At least you're not dead.

Mon, Oct 29, 2012 6:11pm
We live off Battery Park in Old New Castle. It's just at sunset and the water hasn't come up into the park yet. The only business open in ONC today was the liquor store. High tide today was not as high as the tide was yesterday. The winds have picked up a bit but still not too strong.

Mon, Oct 29, 2012 7:56pm
I just walked along the trail in Battery Park from the burm to the wharf. The tide was incredibly low. Reminded me of the stories you hear about the Tsunami where the water gets pulled out and then comes in as a giant wave. The power is still on in ONC. No trees down. Just lots of leaves everywhere. Water in the park from rainfall. Will update as circumstances change.

Mon, Oct 29, 2012 7:59pm
I did half a day at the post office today fielding phone calls from employees asking if they should come to work. I was advised to tell them to use their own discretion. I left early afternoon to eliminate the risk of getting caught in a stage 3 travel ban, which would have meant camping out in a back office somewhere.

As far as my pizza job is concerned, I'm unaffected as my schedule there is Friday thru Sunday. However, I can guarantee you they won't give up a penny of revenue short of a complete travel ban. Even though pizza is a sort of junk food, they can still stretch an argument that it's an essential service because it's delivering "items necessary to the sustaining of human life".

Tue, Oct 30, 2012 12:01am
crackerman, I think the "state of emergency" was nothing but political...our freakin state closed down for rain!! Did anyone here actually experience heavy rain or high winds? Because all I have seen is normal rain and some wind...nothing remotely dangerous or life threatening where I live and work.

Tue, Oct 30, 2012 6:29am
EarlGrey: For once, I would have to disagree with you. Governments are always on the ropes with weather events because if they don't adequately warn people and it results in thousands or millions of casualties, then the public backlash will be overwhelming. In the case of Sandy, they didn't know from one hour to the next where something was going to happen. I'd rather err on the side of caution and make sure people are safe. If it turns out to be not so bad, then it's nothing more than a small inconvenience.

Allan Loudell
Tue, Oct 30, 2012 7:13am
Scenes of devastation - flooding, downed trees, power outages - in some parts of Delaware, Mr. Grey, as our team has been noting on the air. Tens of thousands of people remain without power.

Allan Loudell

Mike from Delaware
Tue, Oct 30, 2012 9:50am
Allan: I have listened primarily to you and the great crew at WDEL during this storm. You "guys" (there are women there too) did a great job. The Philly TV stations main focus naturally is on Philly/South Jersey and the Jersey shore. The only coverage they offer for Delaware seemed to be Rehoboth Beach, no coverage of Wilmington or the rest of the state when I was tuned in.

Your cross town rival only offered a pre-recorded 60 sec update during spot breaks so they'd not have to interrupt their satellite shows (shows where their priorities are).

So once again, WDEL AM and WDEL.com were the ONLY place to get live local info, plus coverage of downstate Delaware. Again, Great job WDEL.

Tue, Oct 30, 2012 10:17am
I was reporting on my own observations seen in DE, PA and MD...I personally saw nothing worthy of a state of emergency; however, it sounds like several areas did indeed need to be closed. Sorry if I came off as a big meany...I just saw/experienced rain and thought this was nothing but hype.

My prayers are with those who actually experienced the flooding and evacuations. God bless you.


Tue, Oct 30, 2012 10:24am
I work at Boeing in Ridley Park. They never close. Yet this time they closed Saturday afternoon and remained closed through today. SEPTA, my transportation to work, was shut down Monday and today.

Mr. Grey apparently does not live in the real world. The governor had to shut down the state to keep the jerks off the road so essential workers could be out. Apparently, you did not see the picture of the state police car that was stuck up to its side-view mirrors in water. This was a real storm.

I listened to WDEL's live coverage until 11:30 last night. Great job! Amazingly, even folks who kept electricity were listening and calling in. Yes, many also were watching Fox or the game (I was half-watching the game), but were also calling in. Nice that a radio station still has a local team that can serve the public! That's what radio USED to be all about. Shame only WDEL is still there.

The storm sped up and raced through Delaware (like most PEOPLE do!). If it had followed its expected pattern, the destruction would have been much worse. Neither our governor nor Mr. Obama had to do this for political reasons. Both are sure bets in Delaware. They did it to protect us. I thank them for that.

Tue, Oct 30, 2012 10:28am
Mr. Grey, you posted your apology while I was posting my comments. I also did not lose power and nothing was damaged. But you and I are the fortunate ones. I just heard from my wife's doctor that they will be closed through Thursday. Too much destruction in Pike Creek.

Mike from Delaware
Tue, Oct 30, 2012 4:00pm
We were blessed too, no loss of power, no damage to home or property, and no leaks into the house. So far no deaths in Delaware. Apparently there were 5 in Pennsylvania, I believe, all were due to trees or limbs falling. I believe around 25K in NCC are without power, 585K in Philly Metro without power. We all were fortunate and blessed.

I drove around this afternoon, after the Governor lifted the ban. It was good to get out of the house. On one of the streets in my neighborhood, a large tree in the yard of a home had a large limb broken off and crashed on their house causing some damage to their home. I don't know the people, hopefully no one was seriously hurt.

EarlGrey: Saw your apology, you're a good man. Sorry, I didn't mean to be so heavy-handed in my reply to you last night. We've all been on the wrong side of an issue here from time to time. The fact you acknowledge your error says a lot about the honorable man you are. It would have been easy to just blow it off, thanks for your integrity.

This is one of those you can't win scenarios for a Governor or Prez. If they don't do enough, they get criticized for not caring and if they do too much they get criticized for doing it for political reasons or the nanny-state thing, etc., etc. A no-win either way. So, I've tried to put myself in their shoes, what would I do IF I were Gov or Prez? I'd err on the side of safety. Better no deaths than to have even one, especially if something I didn't do might have made a difference. That's a heck of a burden to have to carry around if that happened.

There's balance to all of this; there are many times when government tries to do things they shouldn't, but in these weather-whoppers that strike an area just aren't one of those.

Hopefully, we will be getting a number of days of seasonally warm weather with plenty of sun and little to no breeze.

Look at Atlantic City. Gov Christie told folks to get out of AC and the mayor defied him and told the folks to stay. It seems to me the Gov's word trumps a mayor. Hopefully no one died due to that mayor getting too big for his britches, especially as AC took a direct hit from Sandy.

Wed, Oct 31, 2012 6:10am
It just went political. There are two headlines on Yahoo! news: "Obama visits storm victims while Romney campaigns" and "Romney faces scrutiny on aid in storm's wake".

Once again, there's no doubt who the national tabloid press wants to be president - again.

Fri, Nov 2, 2012 1:37pm
To follow up with Jworkman's report; I did a tour of Battery Park (New Castle, not New York) on Wednesday, and the bridge that has been there since WWII (going out to the ice breaker rock formations) was down, still connected at one end but floating in the water. The debris line was halfway across the park, in some places near the shoreline, it abutted the shrubbery of the private property lines. Apparently the storm surge tide was very high after you left around 7:00 o'clockish..... I was sad because upon that wooden bridge, very fond memories were made.

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