MIDDLE VILLAGE, N.Y. (WPIX)—Seven days since twin tornados ripped through Queens and Brooklyn, New York City's Office of Emergency Management says the majority of downed trees are still laying on the ground.
OEM Commissioner Joseph Bruno told PIX 11 News, despite a team of 800 men and women working dawn to dusk, he estimates 75% of the snapped branches and tree trunks are yet to be hauled off and mulched. About 1500 tons of debris has been removed. Bruno said that total represents about a quarter of all the storm debris the city usually picks up in an entire year.
"I have trees down in my yard," Bruno said of the unprecedented storms. "I want it cleaned up faster too."
Bruno stressed the largest obstacles, including about 300 trees blocking roadways, have been cleared. Still, a week after the storms, residents of hard-hit Middle Village are getting frustrated.
"My taxes have gone from just over $2000 to almost $6000 and I'm not seeing any more services from the city," said Peter Popa, an auto mechanic who has two 5-foot mounds of branches sitting on the sidewalk in front of his house on 74th Street.