Pictures of Hurricane Sandy Damage, Bethlehem, PA

Hurricane Sandy ripped through my hometown of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania on the night of October 29, 2012. Strangely enough, this was almost to the day of last year’s Halloween snowstorm.

While our city didn’t suffer anywhere near the damage in New York City and the New Jersey shore, it was still the most ferocious wind storm we’ve ever seen, with wind gusts of 75 mph. Fortunately, we were spared large amounts of rain which would have led to extensive flooding.

I woke up the morning of October 30th with no power and lots of questions. After a walk around my home to inspect any damage, I was greatly relieved to find my roof and the rest of my home intact. In the vegetable garden however, everything was blown down and facing south. The wind blew out of the north, a rare occurrence here, and theĀ cover crop and broccoli reflected that.

With lots of questions as to how the rest of the town fared, I grabbed my iPhone, jumped in my car and started shooting.

(click on any image for a larger version)

hurricane sandy damage bethlehem pa tree just misses house

This home had three beautiful old pine trees which were over fifty feet each. Two came down. This one just missed taking the entire house with it

hurricane sandy damage bethlehem pa tree in yard

This home just missed being crushed by a pine which had towered over it for many years

hurricane sandy damage allentown pa tree across road

This was the scene everywhere – lots of obstacles

hurricane sandy damage bethlehem pa lehigh university

The campus of Lehigh University lost many beautiful old growth trees

hurricane sandy damage bethlehem pa lehigh university

We experienced only about three inches of rain, but even with that small amount, the soil softened enough to allow the wind to uproot trees. Most of the trees I saw looked just like this one – roots snapped near the dripline

hurricane sandy damage bethlehem pa lehigh university

Trees with stronger roots and firm soil were snapped along the trunk like twigs. I estimated this tree to be about 60 feet.

hurricane sandy damage coopersburg pa

In wooded areas, the damage was extensive. The only thing that saved this house from catastrophe was the power lines the tree came to rest on.

hurricane sandy damage bethlehem pa

Trees collapsed power lines everywhere in the city

hurricane sandy damage bethlehem pa tree falls on car

The leaves still on deciduous trees caught the wind and took weak branches down

hurricane sandy damage bethlehem pa church sign blown down

The wind blew the sign at East Hills Moravian Church right out of its brick mount

hurricane sandy damage bethlehem pa garden

My garden’s cover crop was blown down, now pointing due south. That means the wind blew out of the north, which rarely happens here

hurricane sandy damage bethlehem pa garden broccoli

The broccoli was wiped out – the wind ripped out roots and damaged stems

About Todd Heft

Todd Heft is an organic gardener and freelance garden writer who lives in the Lehigh Valley, PA and has gardened for most of his life. When he isn't writing or reading about organic gardening, he's gardening. His first book, "Homegrown Tomatoes: The Step-By-Step Guide to Growing Delicious Organic Tomatoes In Your Garden" is available on Amazon now. Google
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One Response to Pictures of Hurricane Sandy Damage, Bethlehem, PA

  1. TTS says:

    Treetops & Hurricanes. I’ve seen a handful of YT videos featuring the devastating power of Sandy and the fallen trees in her wake. The owners of the house above were very lucky power lines were there to protect them. Amazing grace.