"This picture sums up a major theme from our trip," Reaves says."These homes appear to have limited damage, however, upon closer inspection you actually see flood lines, foundation damage and extensive debris removed from the interior of homes. Many of the houses we saw did not belong where they were; their foundations were several houses down. Condemnation notices were posted on many properties."
This is an example of where piles of debris, which lined the streets, were being removed from homes by different agencies and heaped into large mounds.
Much of the beachfront devastation reminds us that a number of businesses and local landmarks, such as Seaside Heights, were impacted in the same manner as individuals. So many people did not have flood insurance, and must now cover expenses on their own, she says. "However, almost everyone we spoke with mentioned their plans to rebuild."
Rehabilitation is making headway across neighborhoods impacted by the storm. People are being careful, and taking the proper precautions during the rehab of these homes by bringing in hazmat teams to examine the severity of water and internal damages.
This window at Fast Break, a Toms River, N.J., diner, depicts a common image displayed around the area. This is where the MCS group met Cindy, the owner of Fast Break. She shared information that helped direct MCS along the trip to various cities which were affected. The home of Cindy’s mother was 100 years old, and had never seen flood damage until now. The people affected by this disaster were genuinely happy they have held onto their safety and were willing to help their communities in any way they could.
The Manhattan Red Cross had recently consolidated space and planned to rent out the top floor of their building. It is now dedicated completely to Sandy relief, and accommodates hundreds of volunteers all rapidly engaged in activity.
MCS visited with American Red Cross workers after touring the facility, and seeing firsthand the impact the organization has on those who have been affected by disasters.Pictured left to right with Johnny and Julie from American Red Cross are: Anthony Calabrese, Caroline Reaves, Mark Reaves and Marc Hinkle.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency was out in full force. FEMA inspectors were surveying property damage by working with homeowners to properly identify home damages as well as individual needs.
After the devastation of Superstorm Sandy, MCS employees were anxious to begin fundraising. “Our company is fortunate enough to have matched their contributions,” Reaves says. "Handing this check to Johnny Cooper from the American Red Cross was one of the highlights of our visit." Financial donations are what make the greatest impact by helping the Red Cross provide immediate assistance to those affected by disasters such as Superstorm Sandy. Any donations that you or your company would like to make are still welcome and needed. Call the American Red Cross at 1.800.733.2767 for details, or visit their website to donate now.”
“Most of our clients had properties affected by Superstorm Sandy throughout almost every region touched by its path,” Reaves notes.
With many employees being from New Jersey, New York and surrounding areas, the aftermath of Sandy was personal for the staff of MCS, which specializes in property preservation.