Thousands look to Red Cross for shelter from Sandy

By WKTV News

Thousands of people across nine states took refuge from Hurricane Sandy in American Red Cross shelters Sunday night as the massive storm neared the East Coast.

More than 3,200 people spent the night in 112 Red Cross shelters in nine states – New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Maryland, Delaware, Virginia and Massachusetts. The number of people going to shelters is expected to grow as the storm comes ashore.

If shelters are needed in the Mohawk Valley due to flooding or power outages, the Mohawk Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross has shelters on standby for residents of Oneida, Herkimer and Otsego counties. The Mohawk Valley Chapter is also mobilizing volunteers, relief supplies and disaster vehicles, and working with county emergency management officials who are aware that Red Cross resources are available.

The Red Cross has deployed more than 1,300 disaster workers from all over the country to help those already affected by the storm. As many as 160 emergency vehicles are ready to respond when it is safe to do so, and more than 230,000 ready-to-eat meals have been sent into the affected areas.

“Sandy is a large and dangerous storm, and will affect large parts of the eastern part of the country for the next few days,” said Charley Shimanski, senior vice president of Disaster Services for the Red Cross. “We urge people to remain in a safe place until it passes, and to listen to instructions from local officials.”

To find a Red Cross shelter, people can download the Red Cross Hurricane app, visit the Red Cross web site, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767), or check their local media outlets.

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