Nor'easter Forces FEMA Center In Staten Island To Close, Hurricane Sandy Victims Left Without Shelter, Food, Water
FEMA has decided to shut down their center in Staten Island, which was assisting victims of Hurricane Sandy, leaving them without refuge for the nor'easter hitting the New York City area today.
FEMA disaster recovery centers in parts of New York City for Hurricane Sandy victims were shut down, without much notice, because of the approaching nor'easter. This has left many people in Staten Island without food, water, or shelter for the storm. Mayor Bloomberg said that that people in low-lying areas of Staten Island and the Rockaways were advised to leave before the nor'easter. During Hurricane Sandy, there was a mandatory evacuation for all of Zone A. The nor'easter could hit NYC with 60 miles per hour winds and several inches of rain and snow.
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The city's food distribution centers also closed early at noon today. The places have been integral for Hurricane Sandy victims left without power, food, heat, and water for more than a week. Now, those people will be forced to survive the oncoming storm without much local or federal assistance.
According to DNAinfo.com, the Staten Island FEMA center had taped up a sign on their door at 10:30 am that read "FEMA Center Closed Due To Weather." The doors to the center were unlocked and there was no staff in sight. Buses that were "warming center" for victims just disappeared. A non-FEMA volunteer said "FEMA packed up and left...We don't know where they are, so there's nothing here but us [a group of non-FEMA volunteers]."
DNAinfo.com asked FEMA spokesman Carter Langston why the center were shut down. He said, "Because these are mobile centers, they were shut down for life safety. As soon as weather permits tomorrow, they're going to be back in place [possibly by noon]." Langston elaborated, saying that the buildings themselves were not structurally sound enough for the storm, and the staff was in danger, so they moved the staff inland.
While that makes complete sense, it still doesn't help the victims that are still suffering from the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. A lot of people are at their wits end trying to move past the devastation of Hurricane Sandy and really need FEMA's assistance. Especially now, with the nor'easter arriving in New York City. But, the only thing they could do was wait, until FEMA comes back and reopens the center.
Stay tuned for more news about the nor'easter and superstorm Sandy on iScienceTimes.
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