In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, airports have been shut down, streets are flooded and covered in debris, and public transportation is halted. In the face of all this, the famous New York Marathon is scheduled for Saturday November 3, four days after Sandy caused millions of dollars in damage.
Time is ticking on the recovery effort clock for the New York Road Runners club as they plan to prepare for the New York Marathon this coming Saturday. This comes as one of the largest storms to shut down New York City hit Sunday and Monday. While there were lots of preparations that needed to take place for the upcoming race on November 3, there is now the added element of massive cleanup that must take place, among other logistical nightmares, in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.
The New York Marathon is a 26.2-mile race that goes through all five boroughs of the city. Much of the course is plotted to avoid the flood-prone areas, but the massive toll that has been taken on the city by the storm has scattered debris and caused other damage to potential course locations. Organizers of the marathon are confident that they have the time before the race to clean up the course and proceed with events as usual, despite Mayor Michael Bloomberg say that it would take a long time to get New York City back to normal.
Aside from the actual race itself, there are logistical issues facing the race. With public transportation shut down and the airports closed, there is no way to get the 20,000 international runners directly into the city, let alone nearby as most major airports in the region are still closed. Getting the several thousand American entrants and their spectators into and around the city is nearly impossible with the subway shut down as well.
Marathon officials are still confident that they have plenty of time in the next four days to make preparations for the race in light of the damage done by Hurricane Sandy. Several events that are observed prior to the race, such as the ceremonial painting of the finish line, have been cancelled in lieu of cleanup and preparation efforts.
Hurricane Sandy was a major hurricane/tropical storm that made landfall in New Jersey and was felt up and down the East Coast from North Carolina to New England. The damage and destruction it caused in New York and New Jersey is still being estimated a day after the storm left the area.