First Responders and Volunteers Deserve Thanks in Aftermath of Irene
Flooding, felled trees and downed power lines—and the frustration they caused—are all memories that we would rather forget in the wake of Hurricane Irene. However, during and after the storm, there were individuals in our communities that were working in many capacities to make sure that people were safe and received help when they needed it. Our emergency personnel, public works and parks crews deserve credit for their hard work. The volunteers at United Way’s 2-1-1 call center also deserve recognition for answering many calls from people seeking information ranging from how to prepare for the storm to helping those most affected find local shelters operated by the Westchester Chapter of the American Red Cross.
The aftermath of Irene had a lingering effect on many people and businesses in Westchester. Some had to wait too many days for their electricity to be restored. For those who had substantial damage, FEMA has announced that disaster aid will be available. The limits of patience may have been stretched to the limit, but the ability of first responders and good neighbors throughout Westchester to lend a hand were a much stronger force. We can only hope that a storm of Irene’s magnitude avoids us for a long time, but at least we have emerged more prepared for when the next one does.