Stand on Surf Avenue and there’s little evidence that in October 2012, a nearly 14-foot storm tide broke across the Coney Island boardwalk, merging with water from Gravesend Bay and Coney Island Creek, and violently surged across the fragile peninsula from all three sides. Hurricane Sandy’s life-threatening storm sent cars floating down dark, flooded streets and left thousands of residents without light, water, or heat. It left others marooned on upper floors of apartment houses and public housing towers in the neighborhood’s West End. In neighborhoods as close as Bensonhurst, it was business as usual, almost as though there’d been no hurricane. But in Coney Island in the hours and days after, people resorted to eating food tainted by sea water and collected water from hydrants, as sinkholes big enough to crawl through opened from one end of the block to the other…
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