Enormous piles of wreckage now dot the coastline in New Jersey and New York as work crews haul away the huge amount of rubble created by Superstorm Sandy.

Mario Tama, Getty Images

Three weeks in, the round-the-clock effort has strained the resources of sanitation departments and landfill operators, and caused headaches and heartache for thousands of families.

New York City alone has already removed an estimated 271,000 tons of wreckage from flooded neighborhoods.

As of Friday, auto insurance companies had reported storm damage to at least 52,000 vehicles.

Sand plowed off of the streets in the city of Long Beach now stands in a pile five stories high.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.