10:35 AM EDT, October 30, 2012
Startling images of Hurricane Sandy's devastating impact are coming in.
Lower Manhattan was submerged as a 14-foot storm surge flooded Wall Street.
The Hudson River poured into the Battery Tunnel linking Manhattan and Brooklyn.
A firestorm engulfed an entire neighborhood in the borough of Queens, with homes burning as far as the eye could see. The sheer size of the inferno made it look like a war zone. The stunning aftermath shows more than 80 homes reduced to ashes. Falling power lines are thought to have triggered the blaze.
The moment the lights went out in Lower Manhattan, a ball of white flame erupted from a power plant, plummeting the most famous skyline in America into darkness.
Reporters braved the storm up and down the East Coast.
Al Roker said, "Hurricane Sandy is waging a war."
One reporter said as the waves crashed in, "Woah, woah! Time to go!"
There was a terrifying scene as a giant crane teetered in the wind, then collapsed above 57th Street in Manhattan. The crane arm continued to dangle ominously over the intersection today.
The storm surge swamped a major Manhattan highway. One driver tried to power through the flooded streets.
The flood rose so quickly, a yellow cab was abandoned in the middle of the highway. And hundreds of other cabs were up to their roofs in water .
Water inundated subway stations, crippling the city's transportation system and cascaded into underground parking garages. Abandoned cars were turned into floating debris, but water wasn't the only hazard. Long after the storm passed, weakened trees continued to fall.
Fifth Avenue in New York City, one of the most iconic stretches of road in the world, with its high-end stores, shut down for business today. The windows are actually boarded up at Bergdorf Goodman. The doors are locked tight with signs that say: "Try and Come Back Tomorrow."
It's the same situation all around, from Louis Vuiton, Gucci to Prada—even the world-famous Tiffany's shut down today after this historic storm ripped through the city.
Hundreds of people had to be rescued from their flooded homes in the suburban New Jersey town of Little Ferry. Elderly residents and children spent a harrowing night as their homes filled with water from a nearby river.
"It's indescribable. Indescribable," said one resident.
In Atlantic City, in the eye of the storm, the city was inundated with flood waters. Sections of the the legendary Atlantic City boardwalk were reduced to matchwood. One section ended up on a city street a quarter-of-a-mile from the oceanfront.
Now, the hard work of cleaning up begins.