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Sandy impact widens: Statue of Liberty stays closed, coaster remains in ocean

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NEW YORK (WTVR) – ┬áLady Liberty won’t be getting visitors for the rest of the year. The national park service says there’s enough damage from Superstorm Sandy to keep the Statue of Liberty and nearby Ellis Island closed.

The announcement came on the heels of what some are calling an unexpected request from the mayor of Seaside Heights — who said he was looking into whether it would be feasible to keep the boardwalk’s famed roller coaster resting in the ocean–right where Sandy washed it.

Mayor Bill Akers told New York’s WNBC he’s working with the Coast Guard to see if the coaster is structurally sound to leave it partially sumerged in the Atlantic, saying it would make “a great tourist attraction.”

Meanwhile, There is no word on when The Statue of Liberty could reopen. It’s been shut down since Sandy hit Oct. 29, just one day after the site had reopened following extensive renovations.

The National Park Service says most of the issues on Liberty Island are trip and fall hazards, due to broken protection barriers and loose bricks on the promenade. There is also significant damage to the security screening areas.

On Ellis Island, the storm caused flooding, buckling floors, and shattered windows.