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American Red Cross talks about Hurricane Sandy preparations

Posted at: 10/27/2012 7:58 PM
Updated at: 10/27/2012 8:01 PM
By: Joangel Concepcion

The Atlantic seaboard began to see the very early effects of Hurricane Sandy on Saturday night.

In Rochester, officials are also keeping an eye on Sandy. A number of disaster organizations have been working around the clock to prepare for the big storm, including the Red Cross.

The American Red Cross says that with the amount of rain that is expected, many families may be displaced. During the storm they want to make sure local families have a place to stay and food to eat.

It was the calm before the storm at the Red Cross's local headquarters on Saturday. A team of seven people have been working with several organizations to make sure disaster relief is in place.

The team is in constant communication with other states that are in Sandy's path. They have deployed five people so far to their headquarters in White Plains. They say the main focus is making sure they have room and food for those who may be affected by the storm both here and across the state.

58 people have died in Sandy's path so far and there is potential for severe damage in the Rochester area. Local officials say they are not taking any chances and want to make sure they are prepared.

American Red Cross Director Richard King says, "We're trying to let people know that you need to be prepared if it does happen for you. Now we have been very lucky over the years and haven't had something anywhere near this magnitude hit our area, so some people take the position of, 'It will never happen here, it just won't happen to us'. We don't dare let people feel that way because we feel that there is going to be a big affect upon this area."

The American Red Cross is selling emergency preparedness kits online and is accepting any and all donations. Power outages are expected throughout the area and they want to make sure to remind the public to have plenty of batteries at home and access to a radio.

The American Red Cross also says make sure your car is filled with gas because the pumps might not be working. They're asking everyone to go shopping as soon as possible and remember to stock up on food and water for at least three days.

Finally, Red Cross officials are reminding homeowners to clean their gutters. They say that is usually what causes the most water damage to homes during big storms like Sandy.