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Cory Booker Twitters Newark out of snow emergency

bookertwitter122910_optSocial Media mayor becomes ‘superhero with a shovel'

BY BOB HOLT
NEWJERSEYNEWSROOM.COM

Newark mayor Cory Booker has been making the rounds and using the online networking site Twitter to help dig residents out of the city's snow-covered streets.

Gearlog.com reports that after the storm, Booker's followers looked toward the mayor's account for advice. Booker went to the Newark streets with his shovel and recorded his travels during the storm.

Booker said Tuesday evening that residents were letting him know what's happening and if they needed help.

According to CNN, Booker said he and his staff had gotten diapers to people and delivered food. He said they got a pregnant woman to the hospital before the ambulances could. They actually got an ambulance unstuck.

"Mayor, central ward needs ur help bad," one Twitter message said, according to the New York Times. "Streets are still a mess."

Mr. Booker responded: "Where exactly? I'm in Central now making lots of progress."

When a Twitter message from someone named Stephanie said "My street (UNITY AVENUE; off of 18th and Styvesant) has yet to be touched," Mr. Booker wrote back: "I'm sending someone ASAP."

And a few minutes later, when a woman named Erika wrote that "My grandma is 82 yrs old, she can't get out," Mr. Booker sent an urgent Twitter message back: "Where is she? I will go now."

Not everyone was receptive to Booker's efforts. The New York Daily News reported Newark resident TaJuan Bonds tweeted to Booker that he was stuck on Bergen & Grumman Ave," tweeted Bonds. Booker took his phone number and arrived on the scene to help.

Meanwhile, Bonds tweeted an expletive-laced post about the amount of snow he needed to shovel — and despite the fact that Booker had called Bonds' mother, Bonds expressed skepticism that Booker would show up.

Booker was not pleased.

"Wow u shud be ashamed of yourself. U tweet vulgarities and then I come out here to help & its ur mom & sis digging. Where r u?" Booker scolded Bonds. The Newark mayor helped the snowed-in family shovel.

That said, another one of Booker's million-plus followers tweeted, "He's like a superhero with a shovel."

Before he turned in Wednesday morning at about 2 a.m., Booker tweeted, " Heading in for night. Plows & Salt trucks will work through the night & into morning. Still much work to do but I'm grateful 4 the progress."

The mayor was out clearing snow until 3 a.m. on Dec. 28 before heading back out three hours later after a few winks. "This is one of those times you're just pushing," Booker told Time magazine."It's an endurance test."

This is not the first time Booker has responded to citizens in trouble on Twitter. He shoveled the driveway of an elderly man last New Year's Eve after the man's daughter tweeted about his predicament. He also hit the streets during snowstorms last February.

 

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