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Bay Area residents are doing what they can to help victims of Hurricane Sandy on the East Coast. Many are giving much needed blood. George Kiriyama reports.
Several Bay Area residents and volunteers are among those from across the state heading to the East Coast to help communities pounded by Hurricane Sandy.
The help was needed: By Tuesday morning, President Barack Obama had declared a major disaster in New York City, New Jersey and Long Island, making federal funding available to areas that need it. Twenty deaths were attributed to the storm across that tri-state area, including an off-duty New York Police Department officer who died in his Staten Island home, and a woman who died after touching wires in a flooded area. Others were killed by fallen trees.
The American Red Cross in the Bay Area sent seven people on Saturday to help out in Baltimore; and plans to send more workers were on hold as airlines are canceling flights because of the storms. The Red Cross is asking people across the country to donate blood, because more than 100 blood drives on the East Coast had to be canceled because of the storm.
Gov. Jerry Brown said on Tuesday that California National Guard has flown airplanes, helicopters and two specialized rescue teams to North Carolina. The 129Th rescue out of Miffed Field is part of that crew.
Over the weekend, 10 search-and-rescue experts from fire departments up and down the state were sent to Virginia and other areas.
Pacific Gas & Electric, headquarter in San Francisco, sent over 150 workers to help restore power in New York.
The Red Cross' national organization is requesting donations to its American Red Cross Disaster Relief fund on line.
NBC 4 New York contributed to this report.