Irene Spares Jersey Shore From Major Damage

Residents along the New Jersey Shore were expecting the worst from Hurricane Irene. Many there boarded up windows and put sand bags around front doors. But the region was spared all but minor damage.

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DAVID GREENE, host:

Let's go down, now, to the New Jersey shore where people were also expecting the worst from Hurricane Irene. Many residents boarded up windows and put sandbags around front doors.

But NPR's Jeff Brady reports that the region was mostly spared.

JEFF BRADY: Hurricane Irene came ashore just north of Atlantic City. About 10 miles away in Margate City, Hanna Sinderbrand rode out the storm with her family in their brick home.

HANNA SINDERBRAND: Scariest part was the tornado warning. Warning, that was the scariest part.

BRADY: Oh, so just a warning, not an actual tornado.

SINDERBRAND: No, we did not have a tornado. It was the warning on the TV that kind of put us into a little bit of a frenzy. But afterwards, everyone kind of rested easy and it was okay.

BRADY: Her sister Leah Sinderbrand was surprised to find no damage after the storm.

LEAH SINDERBRAND: I was really scared. I'm like a nervous Nelly. And I really thought that we have a huge tree in the backyard and I kept visualizing it crashing through my bedroom. But look, there's nothing. Nothing's wrong - but the wind.

BRADY: Freddie Perry's family has a summer house nearby in Longport. They went to their other house in Philadelphia for the hurricane and returned early Sunday once the storm had passed.

FREDDIE PERRI: Once we found out we could come down here, we drove right down just to check it out to make sure everything was okay.

BRADY: The house is just about 30 feet from the beach.

PERRI: From the news, it sounded like we were going get a lot of damage. But even our garage didn't flood, so, didn't get anything.

BRADY: Down the road, Cindy Levine lives on the shore year-round. She spent Sunday unpacking all the photos and important papers she took with her when she evacuated.

CINDY LEVINE: We will get a little rain, a little water in our laundry room, during normal storms. And it was - everything has been perfectly dry. We are so blessed. You know, the anxiety levels went down completely.

BRADY: Levine says it looks like the electricity never went out here. Still

LEVINE: I'm glad we took the precaution and left.

BRADY: Along the shore, Hurricane Irene was a tough hit for businesses, especially those that depend on summer tourists. Because of the storm, Atlantic City casinos shut down for only the third time since gambling was legalized in the 1970s.

Jeff Brady, NPR News, Margate City, New Jersey.

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