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Nor’easter ‘Winter Storm Athena’ Hits NY & NJ in Sandy’s Wake

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As New Jersey and New York are still trying to recover from the damage created by Hurricane Sandy, a Nor’easter named Winter Storm Athena (yep, we’re naming snowstorms now) is bearing down on the coastline.

Locations in New Jersey and New York are again being evacuated as a the weaker, winter storm approaches areas that remain flooded and without power. New York City Mayor Bloomberg advised police to patrol areas and warn residents about the danger and encourage them to evacuate, though experts say this Nor’easter will be far less powerful than Sandy.

The city is closing all parks, playgrounds, beaches and construction sites, and Bloomberg also evacuated three nursing homes and an adult care facility in Queens’ Rockaway Peninsula that are currently running on generators, displacing 620 people.

Residents in areas in storm-ravaged New Jersey have been told to restock their emergency supplies, and some shore towns were planning for evacuations later today as the storm will hit shores already stripped of their protective sand dunes. Wind speeds were starting to pick up this morning and some snowfall has already been reported in southern Jersey and Philadelphia, as well as ice pellets in Long Island.

Many airlines have shut down flights in and out of the area today and advised people to reschedule their flights until after the storm.

Despite the warnings, many residents are refusing to budge, believing nothing could be as bad as Sandy and they survived that. Storm surges are expected to reach only a third of what was experienced during Sandy — but that’s still a 4-foot surge.

So compared to Sandy, Athena is looking like a weak bitch, but a bitch nonetheless.

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