Margate residents return home, bridge tolls waived -

Margate residents return home, bridge tolls waived

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After thousands of people left to escape Sandy on Sunday, residents of Brigantine, Margate and Longport were finally permitted back onto the island on Thursday afternoon.

For those returning home many found it troubling that the Margate Bridge was charging their normal $1.50 toll for returning residents.

"We're sitting here, we couldn't even get food. It took us forever to get off the island to get food and they wouldn't let us back on and then they want to charge us to get back on? That is ridiculous," said Margate resident Dennis Osborn.

News Channel 40 was able to get in touch with the owners of the Margate Bridge to relay the frustrations had by many residents.

Since we reached out to them, Margate Bridge officials have decided to waive the toll on the bridge until 6 p.m. Saturday.

A spokesperson for Ole Hansen, the company that owns the bridge, says all tolls collected Thursday will be donated to the American Red Cross relief effort.

As for Margate residents who were stranded on the mainland, they braced for the worst while returning home.

"It's terrifying to watch everything on the news and not be able to see it yourself," said Teddi Fusco of Margate. "It's devastating. Now we're just trying to figure out what still around and still left and what we have to do to put it back together."

The inside of Fusco's home received little damage but her car was flooded and destroyed during the storm and the hurricane force winds brought down a neighbors tree into her backyard.

For Fusco and many residents, they were forced to sit and wait on the mainland and wonder what was left of their homes.

"Frustrating, very frustrating. I had been told that a couple blocks had electricity back by Tuesday and we still couldn't go to see what we were up against," said Fusco.

The damage from Sandy can still be seen in the form of downed trees and flood damaged homes.

As residents return and begin to rebuild, they are left facing the devastating effects of Sandy.

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