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Superstorm Sandy

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On October 29, 2012, Superstorm Sandy struck the eastern seaboard, impacting states from Florida to Maine. According to the National Hurricane Center, Superstorm Sandy was the largest Atlantic hurricane recorded in history, and the second most expensive after Katrina in 2005. Destroying parts of the Caribbean, Mid-Atlantic, and Northeastern United States, Sandy caused approximately $20 billion in damage and an estimated loss of $50 billion in revenue from interruption to businesses.

The telecommunications infrastructure in these areas was also severely damaged. In fact, Superstorm Sandy knocked out approximately 25 percent of all cellphone communications across 10 states. An estimated 800,000 New Yorkers lost power during the storm, and the city’s telecom network experienced downed landlines and cell towers. Adding to the situation, a key hub for a major telecom provider located in lower Manhattan flooded, so it was unable to provide Internet or voice communications to its customers. In fact, thousands of people remained without service even six months after the storm.