Not to be a dick......but it sort of sounds like people didn't prepare that well even though they had a lot of warning. New Yorkers and NJ types are tough, but also stubborn. I bet on the west coast if someone said huge earthquake, next sat or sun, no one would be left in the city lol. I could see if it was a little storm that got huge overnight, but hell they talked about it for a week. go buy a ton of canned food and get water. If your home close to sea get the hell out. Maybe sure you have 100 gallons or more for your generator before storm, not day after.
My earthquake readiness could be better, needs to be better, but at least i have 1 week or water and MRE. Actually more then that, probably a weeks worth for 3-4 people. Also I have a great generator that run on propane or gas in my shed out back. That way you have propane for electricty. When power went out for 36 hours one time I was golden with my generator. Can't count on the govt. Can't expect GWB or Obama to make an order and cure the ills of millions of people. It's called personal responsibilty.
Everyone should think about what can happen in your area, and then prepare more for it. I know i am going to. More water, more food, and for sure more ammo. I heard its getting bad in areas of NY. The stories will get bad here in a few days.