As Hurricane Sandy prepares to make landfall on the east coast, the Red Cross of Washtenaw County is mobilizing a fleet of volunteers to respond to disaster victims in New York.
"In anticipation of the storm, we deployed two teams of volunteers with our emergency response vehicle, which is capable of handling mass care, to New York City," Donna Duvin, executive director of the WCRC said.
Hurricane Sandy is a category 1 storm forecasted to make landfall late Monday night in Atlantic City, N.J., bringing with it life-threatening storm surges, forceful winds and rainfall that could cripple transportation and leave millions without power.
Duvin said the Red Cross has put out a standby call to its volunteers in the event storm shelters are inundated with displaced families.
"At this point we won't know what the needs will be in terms of emergency shelter until after the storm hits," she said. "If I had to guess, they will need a lot of volunteers."
Duvin said residents who want to donate to the Red Cross' disaster relief efforts can visit http://www.redcross.org/ and click on the "donate now" button on the home page.
"This is going to be a costly operation and any donations are greatly appreciated," Duvin said.
Residents with family or friends living in the storm's path can click on the Red Cross' "contact and locate loved ones" link to check on their status after the storm hits.