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This is Part 1 of 3, submitted by Escalon High School alum and NYC radio news anchor Steve Scott on "Surviving Sandy":

There aren't many good things about hurricanes. But, one positive - different from, say, a tornado or an earthquake - is that you have some warning. You know it's coming.

It was Wednesday, October 24th, five days before Sandy crashed into the Jersey shore, that our WCBS 880 Chief Meteorologist Craig Allen first let slip those two words. 'PERFECT STORM.'

Hurricanes in the northeastern U.S., while not common, are certainly not unheard of. Irene hit us just last year. But, Craig Allen told us this storm was different. Unlike most Atlantic hurricanes, it would not just fade away over the ocean. This one would combine with an approaching low pressure system, gain strength and make an almost unprecedented left turn...slamming full force into an area populated by tens of millions of people. With a storm surge of more than 11 feet. At lunar high tide. Perfect storm, indeed. But, at least we knew it was coming. At least we had some time to prepare.

In those first days, our primary job at WCBS was to educate our listeners. What, exactly, is a perfect storm? The 1991 storm that coined the term (and the movie) was a distant memory...and that one was north of us. It didn't hit New York City head on. What would be the primary danger? Wind? Rain? Storm surge? (As it turned, no and YES!) We did our best to inform our listeners, without scaring them. We covered days of storm preparations. It's sad to think that days of filling sandbags - countless man-hours - would be washed away in one, massive tidal surge.

Sunday, October 28th. My wife Jeanne and I get a knock on our front door. Evacuation! Time to get out! We knew that knock was coming; we already had a bag packed. We live right on the Hudson River, and had been evacuated during Irene last year. We headed to a hotel in midtown Manhattan (more on that later).

Then, before we knew it, it was October 29th. Sandy was upon us. At WCBS, we had mapped out who would be where. My afternoon co-anchor. Wayne Cabot and I would stay on as late into the evening as needed, to lead the storm coverage. We had reporters down the Jersey shore. Reporters on Long Island. And, a reporter at the lower tip of Manhattan.

To be continued...


A very Happy 50th Anniversary to Herman and Barbara Boone on Saturday, November 24th.


Happy Birthday to my neighbor and friend, Gayle Kroon, Wednesday, November 28th.


Please contact me if you have items for the Farmington News column. E-mail me at or phone 896-6697.