New York Times

As Hurricane Sandy approached landfall Monday, Federal Emergency Management Agency officials here were struggling with the question of how to deploy resources in the face of a powerful, far-reaching storm that was bearing down on a string of the nation’s largest metropolitan areas. Based on forecasts and calculations, the officials decided to focus their resources on the southern part of New Jersey, where they had hundreds of thousands of ready-to-eat meals and bottles of water and hundreds of staff members prepared to respond.