As Superstorm Sandy churned slowly inland, millions along the U.S. East Coast awoke Tuesday without power or mass transit, and huge swaths of New York City were unusually dark and abandoned. At least 17 people were killed in seven states.

The storm that made landfall in New Jersey on Monday evening with 80 mph sustained winds cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses from the Carolinas to Ohio and put the presidential campaign on hold one week before Election Day.

New York was among the hardest hit, with its financial heart closed for a second day and seawater cascading into the still-gaping construction pit at the World Trade Center. The storm caused the worst damage in the 108-year history of New York’s extensive subway system, according to Joseph Lhota, the chairman of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

“This will be one for the record books,” said John Miksad, senior vice president for electric operations at Consolidated Edison, which had more than 670,000 customers without power in and around New York City.

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