Hurricane Irene Leaves Scars Along East Coast

Hurricane Irene Leaves Scars Along East Coast

A historic 141-year-old covered wooden bridge in Vermont was swept away. It was just one of the devastating flash floods triggered by Tropical Storm Irene as it powered through New England.

A fast-moving flash flood devastated the town of Margaretville, New York, sweeping over the top of a bridge, forcing people to abandon vehicles. One pick-up truck still had the engine and wipers running after it was abandoned.

Some people were rescued by firefighters in dinghies as the water rose rapidly inside and outside of a building.

And a reporter from a Long Island news station was almost swept away live on TV as the storm blew in.

The town of Lodi, New Jersey, just minutes from Manhattan, was flooded from end to end.

NBC's Al Roker was broadcasting live as a lifeguard shack crashed into a boardwalk.

Despite the destruction, some complained that Hurricane Irene had been overhyped. But the Today show weatherman defended the dire warnings.

"If there's a bear outside your home and I see it and I don't say anything to you, it's irresponsible. That doesn't mean the bear will come in and get you. But you need to know it's there," said Roker.

The fact is, Irene has affected more Americans than any storm in history—65 million . There are 27 dead. Five million are without power. Damages total $7 billion.

And one report is certain to go down in history as a classic TV weather moment. Reporter Tucker Barnes from WTTG-TV in Washington, D.C., was covered in a mysterious green foam during a live broadcast from Ocean City, Maryland.

"I don't know what it is. It has a sort of sandy consistency to it. It doesn't taste great," said Barnes.

The mystery has now been solved. It was raw sewage churned up by the raging ocean waves.