With all of the passengers of the Roosevelt Island tram stoppage safely on land, officials are trying to get to the bottom of what happened. It turns out the rescue schemes - the crane and the cade - were improvised in the middle of the night, since the backup system did work nor did the second backup system work (the second electrical backup was busted because it failed an inspection over a year ago and was never fixed - why have redundancies when you're transporting people?). The president of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation, which manages the island and tramway, Herbert Berman, said that a power surge had disrupted the main system; Con Ed didn't have an reports of a surge (and why would a surge only effect the tram and not other businesses). so perhaps it was an internal surge? Mayor Bloomberg promised an investigation and praised the emergency responders, though there's some question why the police took the lead when the fire department has more experience in this area (one idea: the Mayor LOVES Commissioner Kelly). While there is much public bickering, we have to hand it to the passengers for being good-natured, if freaked out, about everything. We doubt we would have been that strong!
The Daily News has notes that fell to First Avenue: "Please give us ... bottles and diapers for babies," and one asking for a "'pee bucket' and 'water bottles,' adding, 'If you can fit a pizza in, we'd appreciate it'." The News' Richard Huff looks at the local news coverage.
Photograph of rescue basket being sent to the tram from the AP