Yesterday afternoon an explosion and subsequent 7-alarm fire tore through several East Village apartment buildings on 2nd Avenue, forcing hundreds to evacuate their homes and leaving an entire neighborhood in shock. Within moments, American Red Cross teams were en route to the scene to make sure that families’ emergency needs were met. A Red Cross relief center, opened at nearby PS 63, provided a safe haven for the devastated residents. There, they found a safe place to gather, warm meals, snacks, water, assistance with medical needs as well as emotional support from trained Red Cross mental-health volunteers. Of the nearly 80 people who turned to the Red Cross yesterday for help, nearly 30 were in need of temporary housing that the organization provided.
Today, the relief services have transferred to a Resident Service Center located at Thompkins Square Branch Library (331 East 10th St.) where Red Cross volunteers are working with City partners to address a variety of emergency needs.
Along with those evacuated, Red Cross volunteers have been a continuous line of support for firefighters and other emergency workers working tirelessly at the scene, distributing meals, snacks, water and other relief items.
The Red Cross will continue to work day and night to support this community in the days to come.