Local Residents Help in Irene Recovery Efforts
Moore County residents are ready, if called, to help with cleanup and recovery in the aftermath of Hurricane Irene.
Two volunteers, Jana Snowball and Steady Meares, have been deployed, and four others are on call, said Buddy Spong, executive director of the Moore County chapter of the American Red Cross.
Snowball, the emergency services coordinator for the Moore County chapter, is stationed in Wilson. She is working in government operations, assisting with emergency operations commands.
She described the operations center as a old mall facility with plenty of activity.
"It's a very active large room, with people coming and going," she said.
Snowball, who said she expects to return to Moore County Thursday, has been in Wilson for a week. She said she toured Granville, Warren and Halifax counties.
"There were quite a bit of trees down and they still have some power outages there," she said of what she saw in Halifax County.
Spong said about 20 Moore County residents are qualified to assist in times of disaster.
"When they join the team, they go through training and must pass a background check," Spong said. "We make sure they are qualified to do the jobs we send them to do."
Scot Brooks, Moore County emergency manager, went to the North Carolina coast to assist his counterparts there.
Hurricane Irene made landfall Saturday morning on the Outer Banks in North Carolina and moved up the East Coast over the weekend. At least 38 people in 11 states, including six in North Carolina, died in the storm, which at brought devastating flooding, wind damage and power outages in highly populated areas from North Carolina to New England.
N.C. Gov. Beverly Perdue is requesting a federal disaster declaration for seven counties.
A declaration would mean homeowners and business owners could get help cleaning up and repairing damaged property. Perdue is asking for assistance in Beaufort, Carteret, Craven, Dare, Hyde, Pamlico and Tyrrell counties. She says more counties may be added as emergency management teams continue to assess damage across the eastern third of North Carolina.
Irene's storm surge severed N.C. 12 in multiple locations on the Outer Banks.
Moore County was on the outer edge of the storm, and received minimal rain and high winds over the weekend.
In North Carolina, the Red Cross has 458 volunteers and 51 shelters. Those shelters have been home to more than 6,500 residents and served more than 22,100 meals.
The Red Cross is now distributing comfort kits and cleanup kits, Snowball said.
Spong said those interested in donating to the Red Cross Disaster Relief can do so by text, phone call, mail or in person.
Donors can visit www.redcross.org, call (800) RED CROSS or text REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
Contributions may also be sent to the Moore County American Red Cross Chapter at P.O. Box 407, Southern Pines, NC 28388 or to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, DC 20013.
Millions affected by the storm were without power on Monday. The federal government estimates the damage from Irene will reach into the billions.
Contact Tom Embrey at email@example.com.
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