Harvey Cedars Police Chief to Holdouts: 'Stay Put Till Morning'
By 5 p.m., 'our evacuation was pretty well completed.'
At around 7 p.m. today, sustained winds had dropped to around 20 miles per hour, and emergency managment officials were hopeful that Hurricane Sandy's "eye" passing near Long Beach Island around the same time as high tide would ease Sandy's path of destruction.
Harvey Cedars Police Chief Tom Preiser told Patch: "things are really calm right now, we're hoping that hints at better things for high tide."
Preiser relocated to an emergency operations center in Stafford by early this evening, noting "by 5 p.m., our evacuation was pretty well completed. Nobody was waiting to come over."
He said rescue operations had been suspended for the night, and suggested that the few holdouts that stayed behind "stay put till morning, and get to high ground."
In a press conference held earlier this evening, Gov. Chris Christie warned those still on the barrier islands not to try to evacuate at this point. "Get to the highest point possible," Christie said. "I'm very disappointed some decided to disobey my order and in government officials who told them to directly disobey my orders. It's going to cost people over the next several hours."
He reiterated to those watching him Monday night to "please stay home."
"Stay safe, keep your children close, and we will continue to work hard to make sure as many people in New Jersey are safe."
Preiser noted that there was still a few cots available at the Southern Regional evacuation center, which had a capacity of 320 people.
Preiser noted that evacuees may have to stay put for at least another day, as the "streets are still full of water," throughout Long Beach Island. He also noted that a "couple of [electrical] poles snapped at the North end of the island," which meant certain areas, although not all, of the island, were without power.
He also noted widespread debris and sand in the streets.