A healthy contingent of Akron-area helps is on the way to the New York suburbs to help with relief efforts post-Hurricane Sandy.
Medina County's Buck Adams joins Coventry Township's David Calderone and Kelly Corbin; Green's Jeff Funai and Doug Smith of the Summit County Sheriff's Office making the trek to Suffolk County on Long Island as part of a team that helps manage large and complex emergency events. The team is part of a mutual aid agreement that extends between states.
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(Ohio Emergency Management Agency) Emergency response personnel and equipment are being deployed today to Long Island in Suffolk County, New York to assist local emergency personnel in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
The Ohio All Hazard State Incident Management Team (IMT) is a group of trained individuals who work together to augment or assist local emergency personnel during ongoing, large and/or complex incidents or events such as a hurricane. The IMT is deployed as part of the Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC), which is a mutual aid agreement between states and territories of the United States and enables them to share resources during natural and man-made disasters.
Ohio EMA is coordinating EMAC requests from all other states as the authorized representative for the State of Ohio. That coordination is with all state and local emergency response partners.
The IMT’s mission will be to assist in restoring communities and daily lives to normal. Team members will perform a variety of duties, primarily providing relief to incident commanders and managers already in the field.
An advance team of two team leaders will depart Ohio today, October 30 for New York. An additional 10 team members will deploy tomorrow, Wednesday, October 31. The deployment also will include a Division of State Fire Marshal IMT trailer that includes large scale incident supplies and office equipment needed for the deployment.
Deploying with the IMT are: Buck Adams (Medina County EMA); Lynne Bratka (Ohio Department of Health); George Brown (Boardman Township); David Calderone (Coventry Township, Summit County); Kelly Corbin (Coventry Township, Summit County); Jeff Funai (City of Green, Summit County); Dick Kotaphish (Lake County); Jeff Kruithoff (City of Springboro); Dick Miller (Ohio DAS, MARCS); Doug Smith (Summit County Sheriff’s Office); and Russ Whitman (City of Franklin Police Department).
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Previous Coverage: Summit and Portage Counties Chapter of the American Red Cross may play a larger role in helping people hit hard by Hurricane or Superstorm Sandy. A handful of the agency's Disaster Services volunteers were deployed to the East Coast over the weekend, but Red Cross officials are expecting a request for more people sometime today.
"This is going to be a disaster relief response operation that's going to last for several days," said spokesman Mike Taylor. "As power gradually comes back on to those folks, we're going to continue to have to do sheltering and mass feeding."
Taylor says some of the additional help may not be needed in New York, New Jersey or Virginia, but in Cleveland or Lorain, which were also hit hard by the storm.
He says it's not unusual to send only a few people at first because part of their job is to evaluate damages as they're performing other duties and help determine how much help is actually needed.