Three weeks after Hurricane Sandy battered New York and New Jersey, a new study reveals many of those hardest hit by the storm approve of the job the first responders did in helping with rescue and cleanup. The Quinnipiac poll found that 86 percent of New York City residents thought the response was either "excellent" or "good."

The results run counter to how local residents felt about utility companies, many of which left those affected by the storm without power for several days or more. The respondents also gave a positive response to both New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and President Barack Obama for their actions in the storm's aftermath.

"High marks for the first responders and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority," said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. "But most New Yorkers think the utilities failed their storm-response test."

The results are not surprising given the heroism of many first responders during the Sandy. In some instances, such as the hard hit Breezy Point section of Queens, first responders had to put aside their own recovery to help local residents.