New Yorkers won't have to pay fares on railways, subways, or buses on Thursday or Friday, after Gov. Andrew Cuomo declared a transportation emergency in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. With the subway out of commission, traffic in Manhattan was at a standstill on Wednesday. "The gridlock was dangerous," Cuomo said. The death toll from the storm has risen to 74, and estimates of economic damage go as high as $55 billion, but there are already signs of recovery in New York and New Jersey, the two hardest hit states. Fifty thousand utility workers from across the U.S. and Canada helped restore power to more than two million homes and businesses, although 6 million remain in the dark. Workers returned to work on Wall Street and elsewhere as some roads, bridges, and rail lines reopened. "We are on our way back to normal," New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said. "We are on the road to recovery."
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